Hopes and Dreams of Pixelated Peoples: Reflections on Part One of Livin’ A Simmin’ Life

Author Note: Massive spoilers if you aren’t caught up on this story. You’ve been warned. 

I am relatively new to TS4. My preference is still TS3 games, partly for nostalgia reasons as it was the first Sims game I tried, partly because I feel I know that game best, and partly because I feel I have so many more options available with all the mods and custom content and open world concept. However, this is the first story where I genuinely felt like I co-wrote with the game.

I am continually amazed by the TS4 Sims autonomous decisions, especially by the Sims I didn’t control, which was everyone but Lizzie. This is also the first game I’ve played where I didn’t have a script in mind when writing. I typically write Sims stories from a story-driven perspective, but this story was heavily game-driven. I didn’t have an agenda, except for Lizzie to complete her goals. Initially, I was worried I’d lose interest because the days felt super repetitive, but that’s when the Sims started surprising me.

Lizzie really knew what she wanted from the start. Every once in awhile, I’d gently direct her or nudge her, but she pretty much made up her own mind about things. I got to the point where I didn’t want to direct her because she made some pretty incredible decisions all on her own. Actually, all the Green girls did.

I spent less time following Lee around, but she immediately clicked with MINEZ‘ Sammy Sarafin, and worked her butt off to get promoted like she did, and then engaged.

Nora was bound and determined to hook MINEZ‘ Julian DeBateau, even with his loner, hot-headed, and perfectionist traits – a triple threat. Nora took this as a superb challenge, and eventually wore down the man’s defenses, boldly kissed him…

…and Julian asked her to be his girlfriend, and then Nora looked so startled… as if she didn’t expect him to ever ask. Haha.

And then there was Lizzie, who created a bit of an aggravating love triangle between herself, LegacySims2017’s Joseph Simselfand InfraGreen/Trip’s Rob Buckley. At first, it was aggravating, mostly because I wasn’t expecting it, and because it would be challenging to write. I didn’t want Lizzie to be perceived in a negative light, and I had a hard time believing I would do something like that, but then I had to remind myself that Lizzie was my Sim-self, not my actual self. Once I let myself be free of those restraints, the story really took off.

Lizzie truly fell hard for Rob, and naturally, I expected that to be her choice and her ending.

I guided gently and nudged here and there for her to make things happen, but Lizzie never forgot that she “fell for” Joseph first, and that they had instant chemistry, something Lizzie/Rob lacked.

Lizzie’s “childcare” work made it easy for her to bond with Carrie, Rob’s daughter, and she loved how he was a good dad…

…but Joseph, too, was great with the kids early on during their chapter at the Pizza Planet.

I’ll never forget Joseph’s conversation with the precocious Brooklyn when he asked her to “help a guy out.”

Lizzie and Rob bonded over music, and waxed poetic about bands and songs…

…but Joseph and Lizzie enjoyed a humorous banter and deep friendship from the start. And he won her over with coffee early on. :p

It was the fact that he made instant friends with most of Lizzie’s family and the “bookends” comment that cemented things for me that this relationship could work…

…which was why their first date, initiated by him, was so confounding. I was probably as surprised as Lizzie… had she just been friend-zoned?

That plus the reveal of his in-game, game initiated ex-girlfriend of Summer made me wonder whether Lizzie made a mistake or if we both misinterpreted things.

Then Joseph went outside before heading home and stood the trash can upright, and for some reason, this was striking to me. Here is an upset Sim who just ran into an ex-girlfriend, who didn’t get a much-desired work promotion, who just blew a date with the girl he asked out, and yet he stops and takes the time to pick up a trash can. It spoke volumes to me about his character.

And then, Lizzie went off and kissed Rob. I think, in part, she wanted Rob because of her initial failed date with Joseph. She didn’t want to feel down, and wanted to redeem the evening.

Catarina Lynx, whom I encountered in other Sims games of mine, was also a shocking reveal. She was an ex of Rob’s, and I ret-conned her as the mother of Carrie. I had reworked stories in my head with other Sims stories based on in-game aspects, but this was the first time, I was really thrown for a loop and worked hard to weave it into the narrative.

When stubborn little Carrie threw a fit and Rob didn’t respond well to Lizzie’s “confession of attraction” (all autonomous), I figured their relationship was over before it really started.

The game continued to surprise me. I was impressed by the friendships. Lizzie really worked hard to maintain her friendships.

I enjoyed meeting the delightful and imaginative Teresa Spinks by Skcaga6. I was amazed at how selfless Lizzie was in staying up all night with the little girl to keep her mind off her sick baby brother, even though Lizzie dropped over from exhaustion shortly after Teresa left.

Ali Morrison, by friendsfan367, was always making Lizzie laugh.

Cathy Tea‘s Simself shocked me with her wide range of emotional outbursts and how crazy entertaining she was.

And no one appreciated Cathy Tea‘s Sugar Maple Bough’s invite to a girls night at the Solar Flare more than Lizzie. Sugar was an amazing musician too. I wish I had video of her playing the violin. She was a good friend to Lizzie.

And Lizzie was great with the kiddos. For those of you who don’t know, I’ve also worked in childcare so it was only fitting my Simself also. However, Lizzie had such a natural way with the children. I was impressed, and a bit envious.

Lizzie also shared a sweet relationship with her sister, Nora. I appreciated how often Nora attempted to make things better for her sister, and how she worked hard to comfort Lizzie when she was sad, and just be around to be a friend. She was caring and understanding.

This is especially special for me because the sister whom Nora represents and I haven’t always had the most solid relationship, but we share a closer bond now that we’re both older. I appreciate her counsel and her friendship more than she knows, and Nora feels like an excellent tribute to this real life sister of mine.

On that note, my dad and mom are also a bit goofy like Eddie and Essie. It was inspirational to see their strong marriage in game. My own parents did not stay together, and their divorce was incredibly difficult on my sisters and I. However, I didn’t want that to be the same for my Simself and her Sim-siblings so I kept the nuclear family. I was impressed by the love displayed between the two Sims, Eddie and Essie.

…and the love between these two. They were nauseatingly happy. Haha. Okay, maybe not really. I have a tendency to write real, gritty, broken relationships in all my stories, Sims or otherwise. Maybe I’m a bit jaded, but they say write what you know, right? :/ I stepped out of this story, and didn’t have an agenda, and I was pleased with the results. Perhaps a little sweetness every once in awhile is called for… especially with…

…Lizzie and Joseph. Joseph continued to insert himself not only in my game,  but in Lizzie’s life, not as a love interest initially, but as a friend. I was pleasantly surprised by him. How he spent time with the family and frequently “invited” himself over. How he texted her on a daily basis. How he boldly flirted with her, and she boldly flirted back, and yet still chose Rob. Lizzie was way more assertive and daring than I’d ever be.

And Joseph couldn’t stop smiling around her.

Though Rob had his moments too.

One of my favorite moments was when Nora boldly gave Rob a pep-talk and not about exercising, but about Lizzie. It was so surprising in game – she immediately followed up her pep talk with a whim to talk about her sister.

What surprised me the most was Lizzie pretty much explained she was “into” Rob and broke up with Joseph even after agreeing to give their relationship a try and yet Joseph returned to the household and autonomously apologized. Again, I felt like that spoke volumes about his character.

I was amazed by the expansion, City Living, and I couldn’t get enough of San Myshuno. Lizzie immediately felt comfortable there, and was in awe of the colors, lights, festivals, and spirit of the city. She and Rob visited multiple times, which I tied into one amazing chapter. I could see Lizzie moving here in the future, and I assumed that future would be with Rob, Carrie, and Marshall. Yet Lizzie kept rolling whims to think of or get together with or kiss Joseph, even after she was dating Rob. As a writer, I was confused.  As a gamer,  I was frustrated. And Lizzie kept trying to tell me things and I didn’t understand it yet. Jogging, werewolf movies,  laundry, dancing,  pumpkins,  chocolate,  and even coffee (on occasion) put her in a sad mood. The AI here was brilliant and I lagged behind and tried desperately to keep up.  I even wrote and included the sad moments,  but I didn’t put two and two together until later.

As I look in retrospect, she kind-of idealized Rob and over-romanticized their relationship. I’m not saying it couldn’t have worked, or that what they had wasn’t real, or that it didn’t plum nearly break my heart when he broke up with her… I hated to see my pixelated Simself so unhappy. Yet somehow Lizzie knew long before I did that she was destined for Joseph.

Due to a game glitch, somehow, Carrie ended up in Catarina’s household, and almost immediately after, Rob broke up with Lizzie. I felt like this glitch was a stroke of fate, a wake up call they probably both needed, and me too. The descent into Lizzie’s despair was distressing. I was so invested in these Sims. All these Sims. It was heartbreaking to see any one of them hurting. If I had seen what Lizzie really wanted sooner,  maybe I could’ve prevented the heartache.  I felt guilty.  Was she sad because she genuinely cared for Rob? Yes. Was she sad for her wasted time?  I think so.  Was she sad because she didn’t listen to her heart, slow down,  and wait? I think that was the hardest of all… and there was some serious truth that Lizzie knew deep down and somehow I glossed over.  Am I making too much of a game?  Maybe,  but I feel I gained incredible insight as a writer and a gamer based on this experience of writing/ playing through my Simself story.

I took my time post this chapter because I needed to heal, regroup,  and figure out where to go and what I wanted to do in game, just like Lizzie did. I fast-forwarded a bit and played around for several Sim weeks to capture the shots of the second to last chapter, allowing for Lizzie to figure out her life.

This time was good for her, and it was good for me too and getting some distance. Then I just wasn’t sure where to go. I had a couple ideas. I knew I was planning Lee and Sammy’s wedding since their engagement so I switched households to set it up, invited guests, and sat back to let things go.

And then Joseph popped back into Lizzie’s life again. Interestingly, the San Myshuno story line was already written out for him as I hinted at his desire to move to the city in previous chapters.

He was even the first to invite her to San Myshuno. In a way, Lizzie could have her cake and eat it too. She could still have love (of a different sort than planned) and still get the opportunity to move to the city… so yes, this is an announcement about the future – part two in the city.  I’m getting ahead of myself.

Joseph arrived at the wedding in a sad mood. He was actually mopey, but as soon as he saw Lizzie, all that changed and he lit up like a Christmas tree.

I nearly fell out of my chair in shock when he autonomously kissed Lizzie. I half-expected her to be mad. I mean, they hadn’t seen each other in weeks (er… story years). And yet the look in her eyes post the kiss was incredible. All those feelings flooded back and she was happy. I could see it. I was astounded.

Here I fully intended to “call Rob” post the wedding and try and patch things up. I debated inviting him to the wedding but didn’t have a good reason. I even partially worked out a story line where Lizzie moved to Brindleton Bay to try and make things work with the Buckleys.

  1. But the game answered things for me. Joseph chose Lizzie, through zero prompting of my own. And Lizzie chose Joseph, and I think she would have all along if she hadn’t been so impulsive.  And I just couldn’t deny these Sims a happy ending. I actually think I cheered. Haha. 🙂

Part One: Family Ties comes to a close. Thank you to everyone who submitted Sims and followed me along this journey, and for putting up with this supremely wordy post. Haha. It has truly been my pleasure to feature your Sims and to follow and observe all the Sims in this story. Stay tuned for Part Two: City Living.

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#30 How to Enjoy a Day of Bliss (LASL)

Much has changed since the last time I wrote. Lee and Sammy got married today after a two year engagement. My sister was a beautiful bride and chose a Simbai design for her gown and her hair. They had an intimate ceremony in the backyard of their newly rented home, close friends and family. Sammy moved out of his role as a house dad to be a husband.

Nora and I were, of course, bridesmaids. Mom now manages Dad’s career. She is a show scout for the local television network, and Dad has his own half-hour sit-com. It’s rather exciting. I’m so proud of my dad. He is a rising star in the comedic world.

Mom is pretty stressed by all the hours, but surprisingly good as an art critic. For the first time in two years, I saw Joseph too. He had gone off to San Myshuno to work for Simstagram, but I’m getting ahead of myself.

Nora went to culinary school. Surprise! Surprise! And graduated with honors. She even made the wedding cake for the reception. Sammy bought another house across town so he and Lee could have some alone space. They’ve both been promoted also – Sammy is a lead detective and Lee is a field agent.

And me? I went on my book tour with my agent and everyone loved my book. I managed to crank out another two novels after Orphan SongBeggar’s Tale didn’t do as well as I would’ve hoped, but Castaway’s Call sold over five thousand copies. I was super excited. Of course, everyone’s a critic, and everyone’s got an opinion. Siri wasn’t too impressed with my latest novel where the protagonist was a single woman lost on a deserted island and she doesn’t find love, but finds herself.

“Not every story needs to be a love story,” I explained.

Little did I know, my own “story” was about to change…but again, I’m getting ahead of myself.

Lee couldn’t wait to kiss Sammy, so she didn’t even wait for the minister to say, “You can kiss the bride.” We all threw confetti as the newlyweds embraced.

Lee had the strange urge to prove to us that she was still a fit field agent and could rock a wedding gown and do push-ups. 

She wasn’t the only one compelled to do push-ups. While Ali and I caught up on day-to-day stuff and she chatted about the latest romantic comedy in theaters, Joseph did push-ups on Sammy and Lee’s living room floor. And he looked good doing it.

Joseph inserted himself in our conversation smoothly. I didn’t mind. It was nice to see him. Dad was a little buzzed though, singing some show tune off key while enjoying his third cocktail. I had forgotten how easy it was to talk to Joseph, and he seamlessly included Ali in the conversation, making certain she didn’t feel left out.

Ali wanted to move outside to enjoy the fresh air, but not the sunshine. She claimed she sun-burned easily. I know the feeling. I burned pretty badly on my family trip to Sim’waii last Christmas. So we sat underneath the umbrella-covered table for a bit to continue our chat. I nursed my cocktail while Ali munched on some of the wedding goodies. I couldn’t help but notice Joseph hanging out with Sammy’s old roommates, Sage, Ameera, Julian, and Siri. He grinned at me as I passed by to get a piece of wedding cake.

I enjoyed a nice chat with Aria while munching on Nora’s divine white wedding cake. It was incredibly delicious. Aria said she was dieting, otherwise, she would’ve had a piece. She talked about exercise and raved about music. She was training to be a classical vocalist. I was impressed by her solo during the wedding ceremony.

“I hear you sing too, Lizzie.”

“Yeah… amateur…”

“Don’t sell yourself short.”

I laughed. “Right now, I’m focused on my writing career. Not really ready to start singing in public just yet.”

Nora finally worked up the guts to kiss Julian… out of the blue… no warning.

Apparently, he liked it because he asked Nora to be his girlfriend. She was so shocked that she nearly fainted.

And then Julian couldn’t stop grinning cheekily. Perhaps this is what inspired Joseph.

“Hey Lizzie, how’s it going?”

“Great. I just got back from my nationwide book tour for Castaway’s Call,” I replied.

“That’s good… and… oh… plum! I haven’t seen you in almost two years and wow! I said that,” he looked uncomfortable.

“What?” I frowned.

“How’s it going… so casually…” he looked almost uncomfortable.

“Are you okay?” I asked.

“Yeah… it wasn’t…” he grinned, sheepishly. “…how I planned to talk to you after all this time.”

“It’s fine. It’s good to see you, Joseph,” I said, my heart beat increasing a little.

He was still good-looking after all this time. Not like I expected him to change. He was wearing a plaid button-down, revealing a little bit of his chest. I remembered how he looked without a shirt, and blushed a little at the thought. The fact that his sweater was in my favorite color wasn’t lost on me. And that sexy little side smile.

“It’s good to see you too, Lizzie. You… look… radiant,” he added.

“Why thank you,” I smiled, feeling pleased by his attention. “Lee picked out the bridesmaids’ dresses.”

“It’s more than just the dress. Then again, it always was,” Joseph remarked.

“One for the picture books?” he requested.

“Sure,” I grinned, pulling out my phone so we could snap a photo.

He leaned in close to my cheek right when I said, “Cheese.” I couldn’t help but feel all the familiar chills… the good kind… the kind that made me want to squeal.

“So are you happy?” he asked me point blank.

“I am,” I said, bobbing my head. “It’s been good to write regularly and get paid doing it, and I…”

I didn’t add that I hardly ever thought of Rob anymore. We lost touch about a year and a half ago, and I think that was for the best.

“…I think I finally scraped together enough money to get a place of my own,” I continued.

“Good for you,” Joseph nodded.

“Did you sell your house yet?” I inquired.

Joseph had written me regularly in the past two years – emails, letters, and text messages, with the occasional phone call and Sim-ype session. He had trouble selling his home in the Springs for whatever reason, so he had been renting it out instead.

“No, not yet… it’s still there. Why?” Joseph quirked a brow. “Since you’re in the market… do you want it?”

I laughed. “No… I couldn’t afford your place. So how about you? How are you doing?”

Joseph threw his arms around me unexpectedly. “I’ve missed you, Lizzie.”

“Oh…” I said, awkwardly trying to wrap my arms around him in return, surprised but pleased by his sudden embrace. Mmm… those arms. “I’ve missed you too, Joseph,” I sighed, closing my eyes to enjoy the moment.

“Really?” he asked, eagerly.

“Really,” I smiled shyly. “You didn’t answer my question…”

“Truth is. I’m not okay.”

“You’re not?”

“I’m not happy…not as happy as I could be.”

Okaaay...”

He was being cryptic. I could hear my mother calling me to come over for photos.

“I’m coming…” I called to my mom before turning around. “Can we continue this conversation later?”

I tried to walk in a way where my heels wouldn’t get caught in the grass but I nearly tripped. He followed me across the lawn and I spun around so fast, he bumped into me.

“Uhooof!” he said.

“Joseph…” I started, seriously. “I have to go get pictures taken.”

“Plummit Lizzie!” Joseph exclaimed, reaching for my hands, squeezing harder than I expected. “Do I have to spell it out for you?”

“Spell wha?”

Before I could finish my words, Joseph’s lips were against mine. I was shocked, but amazed, unable to protest. How could I protest? He wanted me. I could feel it in every fiber of my being. I could feel the tingling sensation all over my body as I wrapped my arms around him and squeezed his shoulder encouragingly. He took that as a sign, and leaned in for another kiss, this time, his fingers interlaced in my hair. I couldn’t believe what was happening. After two years, he still cared about me… and wanted me. And strangely enough,  I wanted him.

“Wow!” I breathed happily when he was finished.

“Too much?” he asked, breathing heavily.

“Oh no!” I shook my head. “I… Joseph…” I dropped my head, almost ashamed. “I’m so sorry. I treated you so horribly two years ago.” I twisted my lower lip, and wrung my hands.

“Don’t worry about it. I know you cared more about Rob,” he shrugged, reaching for my hands and gently squeezing. “But could you care about me… now?”

He looked so hopeful. I hesitated and continued chewing my lower lip, not because I didn’t want to say yes, but because I didn’t want to hurt him,  or get hurt myself. Yet it was amazing, like somehow stars finally aligned and the universe got its act together. It could be incredible,  being with him. I had missed him. I didn’t realize how much I missed him until today. But I didn’t know. I got my heart stomped on before and I stomped on the heart of the guy in front of me. I never really gave him a chance, even though he totally didn’t deserve it. Joseph took my hesitation as a potential ‘no’ so he rushed through his next words.

“I told you I’d wait for you… to figure things out. And if you’d like, I’d love for you to give this guy a second chance.”

“It should be you,” my voice cracked. “…giving me a second chance.”

“I think the kiss did that for me,” he grinned.

I smiled shyly, the heat rising in my cheeks.

Joseph took my hands.  “I…Do you… want to go out with me? More than just go out with me… I care about you and I love our friendship, and I waited… but if you’re not ready,  or you don’t want this,  I’ll respect that,  but I can’t stand the thought of not being in your life so I’d like to be friends either way, but I’d really like it… if you would…”

He took a deep breath as I caught my breath,  my heart pounding in my chest.

“Be my girlfriend, Lizzie Green?”


Author Notes: This chapter featured MINEZ‘  Sammy Sarafin, Aria Rhys, Siri Beaumont, Julian DeBateau, and Ameera Laghhari, friendsfan367s Ali Morrison, Karilan’s Sage Reed, and LegacySims2017’s Joseph Simself.

This concludes Part One of Livin’ A Simmin’ Life.  In terms of the ISBI challenge rules Lizzie needed to… 

  • Follow whims as much as possible ✔
  • Emotions: Remain relatively positive with emotions (well, a few relational mishaps made that a bit tricky)
  • Make money doing odd jobs the first week or until career whim pops up ✔
  • Must do one activity or interaction per day related to each trait (honestly, this was the hardest to accomplish, but I did make sure Lizzie read regularly)
  • Reach level 5 of at least one skill – Charisma (6), Cooking (5), Writing (6) ✔
  • Reach career level 5 – Writer – Regular Contributor ✔
  • Maintain friendships with family members ✔
  • Make and maintain three friendships outside house (Joseph Simself, Sugar Maple Bough, Rob Buckley, Cathy Tea, Teresa Spinks) ✔
  • Pay rent ✔
  • Can start a romance, but must bring home to meet parents (Joseph & Rob) ✔
  • In order to maintain romance, the “love interest” must get along with at least one member of the family (Rob – friends with Nora; Joseph – friends with Eddie, Lee, and Nora) ✔
  • Cannot have love interest stay the night unless love interest invites self over ✔
  • Babies are NOT allowed until Sim moves out ✔

If you have yet to see your Sim show up in story, I plan to make sure that those Sims make an appearance in the next part. 

About this chapter… I had a whole different direction planned, and then bam! Surprise! The Sims have a mind of their own. Joseph was super flirty with Lizzie, and autonomously kissed her with no warning, then performed a series of romantic actions before asking Lizzie to be his girlfriend. I stopped touching the keys and mouse and just let things go.

This chapter was fun to write. I hope you don’t mind the skip ahead in time. I enjoyed the wedding party and all the excitement. I hope you did too. I plan to write a follow-up epilogue from the writer’s perspective so you can read that tomorrow. Thanks for sticking with me through the ride, and thanks for those of you who submitted Sims.

 

#29 How to Lose When You Win and Win When You Lose (LASL)

Gravity always makes things fall. If the sun rises, it must also set. A flower blooms and withers and dies. There is no uncertainty. You cannot ride the the wave forever. At some point, the water must return to the ocean. I should’ve known bliss wouldn’t last. I should’ve known tomorrow would come.

When Rob pulled up to the curb outside his house and saw the sorrowful face of his baby girl in the arms of a strange woman, not her mother, I knew things would be different. I waited in the car on a rare rainy day in Oasis Springs. It was fitting to see the droplets of water crowd my view from the passenger seat as if the universe mourned the death of a relationship before it really got its wings to flutter off the ground.

When Rob returned to the car and dropped his head against the steering wheel, I knew. I knew something was terribly wrong.

“The courts settled our custody issues,” he said.

There was no anger in his tone, no ire in his voice, just inexplicable sadness. Rob had lost custody of his daughter. Catarina had received full custody and Rob would only have visitation rights. It wasn’t fair. It didn’t seem right. Rob practically raised his daughter all on his own until more recently. While we were in San Myshuno, Catarina had made a final last ditch effort to stick it to her ex… saying he was off frolicking with a much younger woman…and she won. Rob and I were barely two years apart.

“I feel like a loser,” Rob exhaled a shuddering sigh.

“You aren’t a loser,” I reached out to touch his shoulder, but he flinched beyond my grasp.

He had forty-eight hours and then Carrie would be removed to live with her mother. San Myshuno wasn’t a place to raise a little girl, Catarina had claimed. She would instead be taking their daughter back East to Brindleton Bay. Apparently, she had secured a job working in a maritime restaurant and museum as a chef, and the courts had ruled this was more stable than life with a night club manager/former bartender.

I asked what Rob was going to do. He said he didn’t have a choice. Carrie would go live with her mom. And he would finish out his affairs in the Springs and follow. I couldn’t help but feel like it almost sounded callous the way he said affairs. Was I one of those? Was that selfish?

He could find an apartment or rent out a house so he could be close to his little girl. She needed him. What about me? What if I needed him? No where in his statements or plans did he mention me. I felt horribly selfish, but I cared about him.

With a lump in my throat, I told him to go.

“Do what you need to do… and this… us…it’ll be… there will be another time.”

“I don’t know how long I’ll…”

“Ask me to wait, Rob, and I will.”

“…how long this will take… how long I’ll be…”

“It’s okay,” I said, even as my heart was breaking.

“…it wouldn’t be fair.”

“This whole thing isn’t fair, and it’s not your fault.”

“Yes, I could’ve tried harder. I should’ve gotten a lawyer. My dad warned me not to agree to this no attorney thing.”

“Rob… you couldn’t have known. And seriously, you’re worth waiting for… both of you. I’ll wait.”

“No.”

“But Rob…” my face fell.

Elizabeth,” he said, firmly. “I can’t ask you to wait. It’s over.”

And that was that. We didn’t talk about it again. I came inside with him, mostly to say my goodbyes to Carrie because I knew Rob would want to spend as much time with her as possible. Carrie was fussy tonight, and I didn’t blame her. I offered to give Carrie her night bath, and quickly brushed past Rob into the bathroom before he could disagree. As soon as I was behind the closed door, I leaned against the wood, tears stinging my eyelids.

“I don’t wanna… I don’t wanna… I don’t wanna go…” Carrie cried.

I swiped at my own tears, and tried to smile.

“I hate my mommy!”

“You don’t hate her…”

I might, but you shouldn’t. 

“I haaate haaate haaate mommy…”

“No you don’t.”

“I can’t… I…” Carrie cried dramatically.

“Carrie, wait… here… look… do you see my hair? Look I got pink highlights in San Myshuno…”

“Pink?” Carrie perked up, and hiccuped.

It was her favorite color.

“See! See!” she demanded, holding her arms up to me.

“I thought you’d like them. Now they aren’t permanent… that means they won’t last… but aren’t they fun?”

I dropped to my knees and she pulled at my braid, inspecting the hair. She threw her arms around my neck and whispered.

“Izzie?”

“Yes, precious?”

“I luf you.”

That’s it, kid! I nearly lost it. My eyes welled with tears and I squeezed the little girl fiercely.

“I love you too,” I whispered.

Rob packed up his car in the next two days. He quit his job. He turned down the night club manager job in San Myshuno. I came to see him off. It was a mistake. I cried a river… no, more like drowned Rob’s shirt in a lake. I hated that he saw me like this. He told me not to wait. It was okay to move on. No one as beautiful and young as me should wrap her whole life up in a high-school dropout, loser bartender, single dad who just lost custody of his kid and was forced to move back east to try and make things work.

“You’re not a loser, Rob,” I sniffled. “You’re not. I could come with you.”

Rob kissed the top of my head fiercely. “I’m still a loser, but thanks. For always believing in me, Lizzie.”

“I’m the loser, Rob,” I said, barely above my breath as I waved goodbye.

I went home, and held my chin high, and pretended like things would be okay,  like the courts would rule again in his favor, and he could move back to Oasis Springs, or better yet San Myshuno, and I would come with him, and we’d be together again, but I knew better. Outwardly, I was put together. Inwardly, I was a wreck.

I couldn’t even drink a cup of coffee without crying, and everyone knows how much I love coffee. I couldn’t stand to be out in the kitchen, to see the pitying faces of my family so I hid in the bathroom, sat on the toilet, and sniffled to my heart’s content, the tears plinking into my cup.

Joseph heard about my break-up through the grapevine… probably Lee to Sammy and Sammy to him. I was surprised to see a text message from him, saying he was sorry, how he wished things were different, and how he wanted me to be happy.

Some days I didn’t even get dressed, but I still somehow managed to eat, mostly because Mom or Dad made me something. Nothing tasted right to me. Not even coffee. I would sniff the bag of beans but I was too lazy and hurting too badly to make the coffee myself. Finally, Mom brewed a pot, getting tired of my moping.

“You doing okay?” Mom would ask me, ad nauseam.

“Yeah, Mom, sure,” was my standard response.

For the first time in weeks, the coffee tasted great. Maybe my taste buds were coming back. There was something familiar about the flavor. I sighed, almost happily, as I settled into a bar stool. Coffee made me smile a little. I wished it could heal my heart. My moment of happy didn’t last as Lee sauntered into the kitchen humming.

Lee had been away on a solo trip with Sammy also. They visited Monte Vista in his home country so she could meet his family. I returned,  brokenhearted,  and she came back engaged. Of course, she came back with a rock the size of all Simtalia on her finger.

“Please… Emily!” I used her given name as I rubbed the sides of my forehead. “I have a headache.”

“Oh sorry…” Lee covered her mouth with her hand. “I didn’t even realize.”

“Yeah, well realize!” I folded my arms over my chest.

Elizabeth, you don’t have to be a bear!” Mom chided.

“Oh you finally broke into the Simlombian coffee bag!” Lee exclaimed.

“It’s Simlombian coffee?” I perked up. “But that stuff’s expensive…” I frowned, looking at my mother.

“Don’t look at me,” Mom shrugged.

“It’s from Joseph, silly!” Lee giggled, leaning over the counter as she poured herself a cup. “He sent it over as a ‘cheer up’ gift for Lizzie.”

“He did?”

Nora was a little better than the rest of the family. She was still pining after Julian, evidently. She tried to understand. It wasn’t the same. She reheated a piece of tilapia that Dad grilled, and even garnished the plate with a lemon and a sprig of fresh garden herbs. I almost cried when I saw the summer savory, thinking of all the herbs I harvested in San Myshuno.

“What? No herbs?” Nora asked, widening her eyes. “You love herbs.”

“Rob…” I whimpered, laying my head on my arms resting on the counter.

“Right? Got it!” Nora cleared off the herbs and replaced them with a piece of spinach and plunked large cups of Simlombian coffee on the island.

“Thanks… Norie…” I smiled, sadly.

Coffee was my lifeline. I sent Joseph a thank you text.

The family was oddly worried to leave me alone. I was heartbroken, but I wasn’t a danger to myself. I purposely avoided texting or calling Rob, waiting for him to contact me. I figured it was better that way. He texted once to say he arrived, but not since then.

I made up all sorts of horrid scenarios in my head – the worst that he reconciled with Catarina so he could be close to Carrie and they could be a family again… without me. I buried myself in books. I could escape into literature. A novel never cared if I was in my pajamas all day without makeup. A novel never told me I looked like llama crap. And best yet, a novel never asked me if I was okay. My sisters took shifts watching over me… hovering near me in the interest of spending time, but I think they felt bad.

Dad didn’t try to understand, but he did try to make me laugh. He tried the whole “lost his arm” thing… under his vest.

“Dad, I’m not five years old!” I protested.

“Sorry…” he rubbed his head awkwardly. “I just want you to be okay.”

“I will be, Dad,” I sighed, heavily. “Eventually.”

I wasn’t even sure what I was mourning. Did I miss Rob? Did I regret taking the trip? I covered my mouth and told Dad I wasn’t feeling well, bolting from the balcony. Did I regret our night together? Maybe I should’ve been sure first… really sure… that I loved him and he loved me… and that we’d be together forever. I didn’t need a ring… because I wasn’t sure I was ready to get married, but I needed more. I needed something. I had something and it was yanked away, and it was yanked away after I gave away everything. Was I being punished? Suddenly, everything that made sense didn’t anymore. I needed to get out of the house.

When I did venture outside, I didn’t want to be recognized. I buried myself in a comfy teal cat track suit, and pulled the hood up. I jogged around town. I ran past Rob’s old house. The curtains in the windows made me cry, the ones we picked out at the House Depot. I’m pathetic.

I couldn’t help but notice the for sale sign in Joseph’s yard. He was moving? He did mention an opportunity to work in San Myshuno awhile back, but I hadn’t thought much about it. I kind-of wished I had an opportunity to pop off to the city and pull my life back together.

I stopped running and returned to the house, staring at the sign. He’s really leaving. For some reason, this left a heavy weight in my heart.

“Excuse me?” a woman in a sharp business suit and heels walked across the lawn. “Are you interested in buying a house?”

“Who me?” I looked around.

“Yes, you,” she replied. “It’s a one-bedroom, one bath with a kitchen, dining, living area, and very reasonably priced. The owner wanted a quick sale.”

“He did, did he?”

“Yes…” she frowned. “Excuse me? Do you know the owner?”

“Um… have a nice day…” I ran away before she could see my tears.

Rob left. Joseph was leaving. I was pathetic. I needed to leave too. I had to get out of here.

I decided I had to do something productive. I popped into the library and started writing. At first, everything I wrote sounded like crap, and then it started to make sense. The words flowed freely from my fingers. They had heart. They had soul. They had grit. I wrote for hours and hours, until the library was closing, and then I went home and wrote more. I wrote more than I had ever written before in my life, and before I knew it, I had a story… and I felt alive.

Within a week, I submitted my first draft to my beta readers – Teresa, Ali, and Cathy. All three gave me constructive, but positive feedback. Cathy put me in touch with her publisher in San Myshuno. I sent my draft in.

After another two weeks, I was contacted by an agent, who wanted to represent me. The publishing company accepted my book, and they wanted to know if there would be another in the series. I was on the phone with my agent for the third time when I realized something.

“Holland Chambers?”

Yes?”

“Are you related to Brooklyn Chambers?”

Yes, she’s my daughter. Oh my! Wait! Lizzie? The Lizzie Green? I should’ve known, even with the E.G. Green! Oh my goodness! We’re neighbors…” she sounded like she pulled the phone away from her mouth. “Honey… we’re neighbors with my latest client… Oh my gawd! Lizzie… how exciting! Yes, you’ve babysat my daughter and son many times…Dallas!” she yelled away from the phone again. “Honey? Lizzie is my neighbor… wait… can you see me?” she seemed to direct to me.

I walked to the balcony so I could see Holland Chambers waving to me from the window of the house across the street.

“Hey,” I waved awkwardly. “So tell me more about this book series thing?”

Holland gushed on and on for a few minutes, excitedly filling me in on the details of publication.

“…and we’ve got you scheduled for a book tour in Simvada, Califorsimia, and Simizona…”

“Wait… what? Book tour?”

Oh yes, it’s fairly standard when the company loves a book and wants to promote their newest author. You’re gonna love it!

“Wait… how soon would I leave?”

Well, right away… if you can… and then keep ’em coming! They loved your book. Loved your book. They want more. I want more. It’s gonna be great.”

I managed to gather everyone, except Dad around the table for my news. We Simype-d him in from his interview in Newcrest.

This is so exciting! I’m so proud of you, Lizzie!

“Thanks Dad.”

“This is such a wonderful opportunity,” my mother smiled. “We’ll miss you.”

“Wow… all such exciting things happening for us,” Nora clapped her hands.

She was heading off to university. Lee would be leaving to accompany Sammy back to Simtalia on an acquisitions trip for their work. They would be back for a few weeks around Christmas and then both received assignment in the Sim Union. I didn’t ask. Government secrets and all.

I’m going to miss all my girls… aww… hugs...” Dad said, through the screen.

I decided to take one last walk through Desert Bloom Park before leaving. I would be busy in the next few days saying goodbye to friends, packing, and prepping for my book promotions tour. I was complaining to myself about wearing the wrong shoes, annoyed that my boot heel kept getting caught in the dirt when I ran into Joseph.

“Uh… hey…” he said.

“Hi…” I replied, sort-of stunned to see him.

“I thought you left…”

“I heard you came by…”

We both grinned, talking over one another again.

“I didn’t leave,” he went first. “Not yet. I’m moving a week from Tuesday.”

“Yeah, I’m going on a book tour for my latest novel, Orphan Song. It’s being published by a real publishing house,” I added.

“Lizzie, that’s great!” Joseph said, excitedly. “I’m really…”

I didn’t miss that he swallowed hard, and my heart twinged. Did he miss me too? Did the thought of me leaving make him unhappy?

“…happy for you. Your book tour doesn’t happen to swing through San Myshuno?” Joseph winced,  hopefully.

“No…Califorsimia and Simizona… so I’m flying south,” I chuckled. “San Myshuno? So you got the Simstagram job?”

“Yeah, I left Nookstone News about three months ago and I’ve been telecommuting, but it’s time I move up there,” he explained. “I won’t have my own place right away. I’ll have roommates.”

“So you’re heading north?” I hated the annoying little catch in my throat.

What’s wrong with you, Lizzie?

“Say, Lizzie! Let me throw you a goodbye party!”

“What?”

“Yeah, a sort-of farewell celebratory thing before you go on tour.”

“But your house? It’s… you’ve… I mean… aren’t you busy packing and moving and everything? I can’t ask you to…”

“You’re not. I’m offering.”

“Are you sure?”

“Lizzie Green… look at you… published author… this is worth throwing a party.”

“Okay… I guess… thanks…”

“You’re welcome… and Lizzie?”

“Yes?”

“Promise you’ll keep in touch?”


Author Notes: Sorry the world’s longest chapter. HA! Now that I have my game up-to-date and reinstalled on my new desktop (as of late January) and all my saves are there, I can most definitely jump ahead and play the next chapter. (Yes, all this time I’ve been using screenshots from my games with no access to the game itself). Hopefully no more glitches. 

In game, Catarina moved to Brindleton Bay and in a glitch, Carrie ended up in her household. I cheated to place Carrie back in Oasis Springs for the few shots in which you see her. But Rob broke up with Lizzie autonomously, but then they both cried. They were both so depressingly sad. It was so distressing and heart breaking. I didn’t really need a song to get in the mood, but I was listening to this song – Diana Krall’s cover of How Can You Mend a Broken Heart? Lizzie took a long time, more time than usual, to “get over” Rob if you can call it that. I’m planning to jump ahead in the story a bit because it just makes sense and the play time was semi-boring in here anyhow.

Then the game took a surprisingly happy turn. Lizzie was promoted to novelist over time and I decided whomever the first person she met with (who she had never met before) would be her agent. And that’s how Lizzie met Holland. Super glitchy game prevented pictures.

And then, Lizzie met Joseph in the park by pure chance. He chatted with her, complimented her, and then he invited her to a party. Unfortunately, my game crashed right when I sent her to the party, so I had to creatively come up with an alternate ending. I think this one will suffice. 😛 

Thanks for reading. FYI, Simtalia is my Simworld version of Italy and the Sim Union is my Simworld version of Europe. This chapter featured pammiechick’s Holland Chambers,  Joseph Simself from LegacySims2017, and InfraGreen’s/Trip’s Rob Buckley and Carrie

Casting Call: Part Two of Livin’ A Simmin’ Life

Surprise! Another 2nd post today! I’m starting a casting call for Part Two of my Simself’s adventures. It’s hard to believe I’m already into Part Two, and yes, I’ve been playing ahead, because it’s fun and I couldn’t wait.I would love to have your Sim(s) join an already colorful, amazing cast of characters.

This is an ISBI (I’m Surrounded By Idi*ts) Challenge, meaning I’ll only control my Simself and everything else is left up to autonomy and game mechanics (short of a few minor things, and I’ll let you know in author notes).

If you have yet to see a Sim you submitted, I’m going to change up my rules a bit and try to interact with each and every one of them in Part Two. In Part One, I tried to leave everything up to game mechanics and only interact with Sims who came across my Simself’s path, but I want to make sure ALL your submitted Sims get a chance in the spotlight.

A few changes from the first part (and this is all explained over in the other page too):

  • I’ve changed up my Simself’s appearance. If you’d like to use my Simself in your game, you can find out more HERE. I only ask that if you feature my Simself in your story, you’d link back to my stuff (either Tumblr, WordPress, or forums… or all).
  • I have ALL the expansions (short of the upcoming Jungle Adventures).
  • I have very few stuff packs, but I plan to purchase a few soon (if you have any suggestions, let me know).
  • My Simself will already have a love interest in Part Two (sorry guys 😉 ) but if you’d like your Sim to find a “love” also, let me know (either for future generations, with another submitted Sim, or just in general).
  • I welcome pets… and I encourage pet submission. I love furry critters. 🙂
  • The upcoming arc will take place in San Myshuno if that influences whom you submit.

You can click HERE to read more if you’re interested in submitting. You can also leave me info below in the comments, message me on Tumblr, or visit the forums page.

Thanks everyone! Looking forward to interacting with your Sims in game. 🙂

#28 How to Make Magic (LASL)

The days flew by and turned into weeks, which turned into months. I saw Joseph less and less as he began avoiding our neighborhood. When I did see him at a distance, I tried to wave, and he always waved back, but he never walked over to talk to me. I guess, it’s for the best. Rob and I enjoyed our blossoming relationship. Even though we were committed to one another, we agreed to take things slow, and that meant no sleepovers… and giving Carrie plenty of time to adjust to having me around.

Of course, that didn’t keep us from sneaking in a little make-out session whenever we could…

“You’re pretty amazing, Lizzie.”

I laughed. “Rob, you’re pretty amazing too.”

“Pretty…and amazing… oh wait! I think I borrowed that line from a movie. Too corny?” he rubbed his jaw.

“I happen to like corn,” I smirked.

“Daaaaadddddy!”

Rob sighed.  “I guess it’s too much to ask for…I’m not getting lucky.”

I gave him a friendly jab in the stomach as I opened the bedroom door. He exaggerated a double over.

“What? We are in the bedroom!”

And that didn’t keep Carrie from wanting me to tuck her into bed as often as possible… even after my date nights with Rob, no matter how late we returned. It was an absolute must to regale her with all my crazy stories. I managed to finish a teen novel, and started into another children’s book, this one featuring a protagonist based on the adorable little girl who stole my heart.

My new relationship took up much of my free time, and the rest of the time, I was still working as a nanny. I still couldn’t wait to come home to Carrie every night, even though Tabatha had pretty much warmed to me too. The family missed me.

Lee grumbled that we didn’t do sleepovers in her room anymore. What are we? Twelve? The last “sleepover” Lee and I had was the forced room sharing the night Joseph stayed over.

Mom complained that I was neglecting my household chores. Of course, she would. Drr…

I ran to the store quick to pick up some laundry detergent, and awkwardly ran into Joseph. Funny thing! He was buying detergent too.

“How are you, Lizzie?” he asked.

“Um… laundry!” I chuckled weakly, shaking the bottle by my head.

I didn’t know how much I should say given I was the person who crushed his heart.

“Me too,” he offered a genuine smile.

I wondered if he was over me or just being nice.  My heart still jumped a little when I saw him,  even if it had no right to do so. Joseph held the door open for me as we walked out of the store.

Dad was sad that we hadn’t done any spontaneous dancing on our balcony to the jukebox lately. Frankly, I hadn’t done much thinking about dancing… with anyone but Rob, but dancing at the jukebox made me think of Joseph, and for some reason, it made me sad. Just like watching werewolf movies did and eating chocolate. Or jogging. And now doing laundry.  What’s wrong with me?  I thought as I absently traced a hand across the jukebox and hummed O-O-H Child. I had no reason to be sad. I had Rob.

Only Nora seemed to understand.

“You do what you do for love,” she said, after practicing piano.

For love? I wondered. Am I in love with Rob? Is this what it feels like? 

In the mid-summer, Rob got an incredible opportunity… to interview for the position of general manager of a night club in San Myshuno. He could do the day-to-day business things and select musical acts for the stage, plus he’d have the opportunity to sing a little himself every once in awhile.  It was a dream come true. The company asked him to come up to Simnadia for a week. Rob was over Luna about it… as he should be. And he asked me something surprising…

He asked if I’d come with him. This was a big step for us. We hadn’t even spent a night together yet, save the night or two I fell asleep on the couch watching the little girl.  I had never been more nervous in my life, but sitting next to Rob on the airplane and staring out the window as we arrived at sunset, I knew everything would be okay. I was here to support my man. I think… I jostled my ginger ale into his lap when I leaned over and looked out the plexiglass. He snipped at me for being a klutz and then immediately sighed and apologized.  I think my face turned as red as the sunset.  Rob kissed my cheek and squeezed my hand as I relaxed back into my seat.  Plenty of time to see everything.  

Given it was summertime, the city was alive with color and bustling with festivals. Rob promised to take me to every one. I was excited to partake in everything the city had to offer.

On the first night,  as the butterflies danced in my stomach, I took bold steps into the festival. Rob was meeting me later. I held my head high and delighted in all the sights,  but shyly refrained from partaking until I could get my city legs under me. I figured Joseph wouldn’t be nervous as he had been to the city before.  He seemed confident in everything he did.  Why am I thinking about him again? I frowned.

“I’ll take that one,” I said to the street bartender, opting for liquid courage… and possibly distraction.

It helped.  I stopped thinking about Joseph.  I started enjoying myself.  I started thinking about Rob. About his thick mane of hair.  About his love for his kiddo. About his amazing singing voice.  About his bartending skills, new cocktails every night.

I stopped thinking about Rob and looked up. I wanted to go everywhere at once.  I was in love… with the city.  Rob finally joined me.  He seemed to enjoy hanging back and watching me run about like a little kid. Every once in awhile I’d catch him… smile mostly hidden by his mustache, but nonetheless, pleased.

We enjoyed fried egg-rolls in the purple twilight atop painted wooden picnic tables. Rob spent most of his first day at the studio learning the ins and outs of bar management while I roamed the city, picking out the perfect outfit to wear to the Spice Festival. I told him everything. I sat on street benches and watched children play hopscotch in sun-faded chalk outlines and heard every language under the sun as I walked through the concrete jungle. We shared our days, and it didn’t matter what we said. I just wanted to hear his voice.

I took advantage of the free herb garden, and plucked some summer savory, cedary sage, robust rosemary, and fragrant thyme. I didn’t know what I’d use it for yet, but I was amazed that the city festival just gave away an abundance of herbs to any and all who wanted them.

I investigated the quaint vendor booths, purchasing festival tee shirts, trinkets, and city souvenirs. I knew my dad would appreciate the eggs, bacon, and steak tee shirt.

Rob felt a bit tense from the long evening with his possible new employers, grumbling about the potential rigors of his new job. The hours would be longer than what he was accustomed to. He also was upset because he called to check in with Carrie and she missed him. I indulged him with a back rub and offered to buy him a drink from the street bar.

“You’re right,  Lizzie. I need to relax,” Rob replied.

We embraced our more daring side, and tested out the bubble bar, with interesting results. Rob appreciated my enthusiasm. I felt so alive. 

We listened the jams of the street performers, in rhythm with the natural buzz of San Myshuno, the sweet strums of the guitar strings against the backdrop of the hums of city traffic.

We delighted our taste buds with ice cold glasses of the strawberry lemonade rum slush. 

We broke to embrace beneath the hazy stars, obstructed by smog, but nonetheless, the moment felt infinitely romantic. 

I adored making Rob happy. He had such a delightful vibrato to his laugh. 

And when we kissed, it was as if we were the only two people in the world, caught in awkward repose, and strangely magical. 

We stayed up all night. Rob ordered me a coffee so I could keep up my energy. When Rob returned to the hotel,  I hung back and observed the people, the real heartbeat of the city. And was pleasantly surprised by the man in the raccoon costume. What? Oh the things you can see!

“Do you like salads?” the raccoon man asked.

“Sure,” I shrugged.

Lettuce get together because you’re looking fresh,” he joked.

I laughed hysterically.  I’m going to blame it on being tired.

“Seriously fresh salads at The Queen’s Greens,” he added.

“Ah okay, I’ll have to stop by with my boyfriend,” I said as he handed me a flier. “Why raccoons?”

“Because our salads are so cheap,  you’ll think it’s a steal,” he quipped.

I resisted the urge to smack my face with the flier as the costumed man skipped down the street. Raccoons? Mini bandits? Steals? Oh yeah,  I think salads.  

I went back to the hotel for a nap and shower. Surprisingly, I ran into Sugar later that afternoon. She flew up for the weekend, and was in town for the World’s Largest Flea Market. Supposedly, Cathy came with her too. She invited me to join her.

Sugar was less interested in the sales than she was in the street musicians. Turns out, the female guitarist was my neighbor, Aria Rhys, a roommate of Sammy, Sage, Julian, and Ali. What a small world! It was appropriate as she strummed tunes from Alice in Wonderland on her weathered guitar atop the colored glass tiles on the sidewalk.

And Sugar even surprised us with an impromptu performance on her violin of Csárdás, a traditional folk dance. I was stunned, and moved to tears. It was impossible not to feel the music in the depths of my soul. I only wish Rob had been around to share the moment.

I don’t know what it is about the city. Kissing feels so strangely magical beneath the skyscrapers, in the midst of this concrete jungle. Tonight,  I didn’t even tell him about my day.  I couldn’t wait for those lips.

Rob said he had a surprise for me. I was, of course, excited. When am I not excited for surprises?

Rob playfully teased me and told me I needed to wait. The pigeons gathered to watch our moment.

I bought fresh fruit and vegetables from a vendor that night – peppers, in all colors of the rainbow, orange carrots, juicy red cherries, and green apples. I even purchased lettuce so I could make a salad for myself back in my hotel room.

Rob knew I was uncomfortable with the idea of this vacation… initially… and got me my own hotel room within our suite, which had a divine deep soaking tub, expansive windows overlooking city life, and a small kitchenette to make meals if I so desired. 

Everything in the city seems to sing… even the advertisements. Like this one for Rose Brothers Tires.

Rob’s surprise was to pick out a painting I’d like from the street artist. Don’t worry about the price, he said, casually. I was amazed at his generosity. I selected the small painting of the planetary system. It seemed dreamy.

We did karaoke a few times. I wasn’t quite as good as Rob, but I stumbled and slid my way through songs, trying desperately to keep up with this music aficionado. By the third or fourth time, I gained confidence and decided to go for it with another Mr. Wonderful song, a duet, A Whole New World… appropriate for this stage in our relationship.

Unbelievable sights
Indescribable feeling
Soaring, tumbling, freewheeling
Through an endless diamond sky
A whole new world
(Don’t you dare close your eyes)
A hundred thousand things to see
(Hold your breath it gets better)
I’m like a shooting star
I’ve come so far
I can’t go back to where I used to be
A whole new world
(Every turn a surprise)
With new horizons to pursue
(Every moment, red-letter)
I’ll chase them anywhere
There’s time to spare
Let me share this whole new world with you

On our final night, Rob dressed up like a clown for the Hijinks and Humor Festival benefiting The Children’s Hospital. I had a bit of fun in my puppy print lime green dress and strawberry scoop ice cream earrings.

I enjoyed a cup of the whimsical dark purple tea from its bubbling fountain everyone raved about – probably a little too much. It made me a smidge loopy.

I did see Cathy Tea. She and Sugar had stayed for the benefit. It was nice to see friends. We listened as Sugar serenaded us with more genius classical pieces and Rob belted some fun show tunes, in his clown costume, no less.

“He’s fun,” Cathy said as Rob bounced off to make balloon animals for some of the kids.

“Yeah, that he is,” I balanced my elbow on the table, and rested my head on my hand. “How are things back in the Springs? How’s your writing going?”

“Great! I started another book.”

“Good for you.”

“Yeah, and the proceeds from my last book are helping pay for our house projects. Sugar and I wallpapered the bathroom. We’re doing a major yard remodel. I thought of adding more lavender plants and I wanted to take out our perpetually dying lawn to make space for a bird bath and a patio area.”

“Sounds nice, ” I remarked,  sipping my tea. “Maybe you should grow some of these purple tea plants.”

“I hear the plant is rare and only grows in specific regions of Af’simica,” Cathy puzzled.

“Knowing you, you’d take on the challenge. So how goes landscaping?”

Cathy winced.  “I hurt my back hauling the dirt around in the wheelbarrow so Joe…” she trailed off.

“What?” I perked up.

“Sorry, Lizzie, I know how you left things with him. No judgment here,” Cathy shook her head and waved her arms. “I didn’t know if you wanted me to avoid mentioning his name.”

“It’s okay,” I sighed, still feeling a slight tug on my heart when I heard Joseph’s name.

“He came over to help finish off our yard. He’s been there every day actually. He’s a hard worker,” Cathy stated casually.

“Yeah… and he’s nice to look at when he’s working too,” Sugar interjected, plopping down at our table. “Phew! I finally finished signing all those autographs.”

I imagined a shirtless Joseph. It was not the picture I wanted to see right now. I shook my head. I’m with Rob, I reminded myself, and decided that was my cue to leave.

Rob and I parted ways with Cathy and Sugar and wandered about the Casbah Gallery, which was sponsoring the event. Rob and I joked around, teasing, tickling, giggling, kissing… but it was when he looked into my eyes and said, “Lizzie, I love you…” that I practically glowed. I knew. This was the moment. This was what it was supposed to feel like.

The fireworks began around eleven, but we were almost too lost in one another’s eyes to notice.

We returned to the hotel and made beautiful music… not quite moonlit sonata…but a concerto with a side of whimsy, some false starts, an operatic vibrato, a creak, a squeak, and a can’t-quite-reach-this-note-but-we-sure-are-having-fun. Our hearts floated in unison,  leaving us breathless. And Rob finally got lucky… but honestly,  I felt pretty lucky too.


Author Notes: Lizzie and Rob had such a delightful time in the city. I tried to do their experience justice with my words, but I’m not sure if I succeeded.Whenever I couldn’t capture a scene,  I tried to capture a mood.  For example,  Rob arrived in the city feeling tense and yelled at Lizzie… hence the ginger ale spill . He immediately apologized. Later when he was tense after talking with his ex (which makes sense during their trip since Cat is Carrie’s mom), Lizzie calmed him down with a massage,  drinks,  and the bubble bar. And raccoon guy flirted with Lizzie and wanted to talk about vegetables. I legit was tired when writing the scene so it’s a bit silly.  :p

Also I couldn’t help but throw in an Aladdin reference, another Disney… er… Mr. Wonderful song. The version I linked to is by the fabulous Caleb Hyles and the equally talented Malinda Kathleen Reese.

So if you don’t know this about me already, I love to sing. I don’t do it often, and I rarely… rarely do karaoke, mostly because I’m shy about it, but once I get singing, I can go forever… and I suddenly lose all my fears in front of a crowd. I don’t pretend to have the voice that Malinda does in this video, but I do have classical vocal training and spent years in all kinds of different choir and singing groups. It seemed only fair that my Simself enjoy and love music as much as me, and to sing in game. I haven’t done as much singing recently now that I’ve gotten older, but it’s still a (hidden) passion of mine, and I’ve always wanted to do duets like this with people. So there, I said it… can’t take it back. Eek! *slinks away shyly now*

Sugar played an impromtu street performance and I was so awe-inspired by her music that I forgot to take screenshots. I am impressed. For the record, Csárdás is a traditional Hungarian folk song. I don’t have a “Hungary” country per se in my Simworld, only Simshua (a.k.a Russia, which encompasses Eastern Europe), but I don’t want to downplay this country’s unique and beautiful culture or song. I couldn’t find a version that I felt was fitting for Sugar, but you can head over to YouTube and find dozens of versions of this awe-inspiring, challenging song.

Lizzie kept rolling whims to think of or related to Joseph.  I didn’t understand but I rolled with it. She did see him, by accident,  in the Springs before leaving, and she legitimately was in a sad mood during all those incidences above… jukebox dancing,  eating chocolate,  watching the werewolf movie,  and jogging.  Go figure?!?

I switched back to the Springs briefly to check on the household members because all of their “needs” were red. I wanted to make sure no one was dying. Nora was over at Cathy’s and Sugar’s house so I clicked over to see her, and lo and behold! Joseph was out harvesting plants in the backyard. I thought it was nice so I added it to the story.

Hope you enjoyed this ridiculously long chapter… and apologies for my long-winded, longer-than-normal author note. 😛 This chapter featured InfraGreen’s/Trip’s Rob BuckleyMINEZ‘ Aria Rhys,  LegacySims2017’s Joseph Simself, and CathyTea‘s Sugar Maple Bough and Cathy Tea. 

A Little Box of Sunshine

Surprise! Surprise! Two posts from me today. In my defense, one was pre-posted, and the other is conveniently over on my other blog, The Krazy Crazy Life of Kass. Much thanks to Kate of Loewe Legacy and Sam from SamAsASim for nominating me for the Sunshine Blogger Award. You can read my acceptance here, and you should totally check out the bloggers that nominated me.

#27 How to Warm a Heart (LASL)

I called Rob and cancelled our date. He was disappointed, but he said he understood. I waited three days and couldn’t stand it any longer. I called him back and said we needed to talk. He thought so too, and invited me over. This time I ended up at the right house… literally right next to Joseph’s. That’s wasn’t awkward at all.

Marshall greeted me first out on the sidewalk.

“Hey buddy,” I smiled, reaching down and petting the Simtannican sheepdog.

The dog shook his head happily.

“Can you keep a secret?” I asked, kneeling to whisper in the dog’s ear. “Well, of course, you can… you’re a dog… I think I’m in trouble, Marshall…because I feel all sorts of butterflies.

“What’s the secret?” Rob asked, startling me.

I stood up so fast that I felt dizzy. Marshall jumped up on me, placing his paws on my abdomen. I laughed.

“Well, if I told you, it wouldn’t be a secret, now would it, Rob?” I smirked.

“Then I’m jealous, Marshall,” Rob grinned, rubbing the dog’s head. “Lizzie has your ear.”

I smiled swept across my face. “Hi.”

“Hi,” he repeated, with a much-too-cute smile, and then ran toward the house with childlike enthusiasm. “Come in… come in… please.”

I followed him inside, and we were barely through the front door when he stopped and I bumped right into him.

“Oof!”

“Oh… sorry… what am I thinking? Okay… hold on…” he moved across the room and cleared off the couch, setting a mixture of Carrie’s toys and the dog’s toys on the floor so I could have a place to sit.

I watched him, amused.

“Sit… sit…” he urged.

I did as he asked.

“So here goes…” he sat down in the chair across from me. “…I know that I’m a package deal, and not many women want that… or can accept it… but I… I think you’re special, Lizzie. And I want you to know that I haven’t felt this way about anyone… for a long time…” he shook his head, and rubbed the center of his forehead. “No… this coming out wrong…”

“Rob?”

“No… wait… I’ll just… I have to get this out before I lose my nerve.”

“Okay.”

“…I haven’t felt this way about anyone… ever…” he corrected.

My eyes widened.

“And I want to give us a chance… if there’s an ‘us.’ I mean, if you want there to be an ‘us.'”

I opened my mouth to speak, but I couldn’t figure out what to say.

“I had a long long talk with Carrie, and she gets it. Well, as best as she can get it… as best as a toddler can understand. And she likes you Lizzie. She’s been missing you.”

“She has?”

“We both have,” Rob reached for my hand and squeezed.

I felt the emotion welling in my throat. What a way to warm a girl’s heart! 

“Please say something,” he whispered.

“I’ve missed you… both of you too…” I managed.

“Yay!” Carrie came running into the room, startling us both, and she raced into my arms. “Izzie…Izzie!”

I laughed, and kissed the top of Carrie’s head. “Hi precious.”

“Is that a yes?” Rob mouthed.

“Yes,” I croaked hoarsely. “I’ll be your girlfriend.”

Carrie almost immediately dragged me off to her bedroom so we could play while her dad made us both dinner. She wanted to show me all her new toys, even if I had seen most of them anyway. It was sweet. I was still processing what had just happened.

After dinner,  Carrie fussed until I agreed to give her a bubble bath with all her rubber boats and ducks and to make up stories about the bubble monster.  Rob laughed and told me I wasn’t getting off easy. I grinned.

“I don’t mind.”

After putting the munchkin to bed, I met Rob outside.

“I’m sorry,” Rob apologized. “She can be so demanding.”

“I don’t mind,” I replied.

“You’re really great, Lizzie. I know this comes with a lot of responsibility and extras that you weren’t expecting.”

“Don’t mention it, Rob, I know Carrie is your daughter, and I know how much she is apart of your life, so she’ll be apart of mine too.”

“Okay…” he looked down, faltering a step.

I reached for his hands and squeezed reassuringly. “I’m here for you, Rob. I want to do this.”

“We’ll just take things slow.”

“I can live with that.”

I threw my arms around him, embracing him as tightly as I could, hoping I made the right choice.


Author Notes: I hope you’re as happy for them as I am. I barely had to write. The screenshots speak for themselves. Unfortunately due to a game glitch, I lost screenshots when Rob officially asked Lizzie to be his girlfriend and Carrie so cutely and autonomously interrupting them. 😛 This chapter featured InfraGreen’s/Trip’s Rob Buckley, Carrie, and Marshall.

#26 How to Distract Yourself (LASL)

Of course, Joseph was a little annoyed. Actually, annoyed is an understatement. He was upset.  I did try to explain everything to him because I felt like he should know the truth. I liked him, but wanted to date Rob.

“Lizzie? I don’t understand. You went out with this guy and we’re dating.”

“But we didn’t define what we are. Are we boyfriend and girlfriend?”

“Plummit! Liz! I like you… I really like you. I waited for you, and then went out on a limb, and this is how you repay me?”

He looked so sad right before he stormed out of the house. Hot under the collar is right. Well, I guess that’s what I get. He didn’t deserve to be treated like this, and now that I know his ex girlfriend broke up with him for similar reasons, I felt like a heel. No, worse than a heel. Dirt. He trusted me, and history repeated itself.

I still changed and went jogging. Alone. It wasn’t the most fun, but I could enjoy the sights of Christmas cactus and date palms and the sounds of morning birds twittering better. Plus I could go at my own pace without worrying about slowing Joseph down. I didn’t respond to Rob yet. I still felt guilty about the way I treated Joseph.

When I returned home, I found everyone in the kitchen. Nora had changed back into her pajamas… and she smelled like she needed a bath. Turns out she went over to see Julian and fell into the trash cans while trying to peek in his window.

“That’s what you get for stalkerish behavior,” I quipped.

Nora jabbed me in the stomach. “I’m mourning here.”

NO I’m mourning, I wanted to say. I was a jerk to Joseph and yet I really liked Rob. I pursed my lips. “What? Because Julian still won’t go out with you.”

“No, because I ruined my favorite pink sweater.”

Mom had just awakened, with a headache, and was still in her bathrobe while she fixed oatmeal with berries and nuts. Dad was mopey about something that happened at work. He didn’t really say, only that he grabbed takeout pasta of some kind from Rattlesnake. Mom was miffed since she went to the trouble of making breakfast for herself. Why didn’t my dad tell her he was picking up lunch?

While Nora waxed about her “hot guy” woes, I couldn’t help but let my mind wander, wondering if Dad had seen Rob at the juice bar. Then I remembered that Rob said he was working this afternoon/evening. Dad continued to groan about an ache in his back. Turns out everyone was having a bad day.

Well… almost everyone. Lee was over at Sammy’s. Who knows what those two were so happy about?

Dad and Mom must have worked out their stuff… because *ahem* he was in the kitchen strutting in a something-something fashion… eating mom’s cereal for her. Awk-ward!

I waited until he left before I fixed the leaky kitchen sink… yet again.

Nora’s mood quickly improved after she showered, though she changed back into her pajamas. She chatted with her friends online and giggled about once every twenty seconds.

I returned to making drinks. It seemed like a good thing to do. That’s when Joseph showed up again. He apologized for storming off, and he said he still liked me, but he’d give me space to figure things out. I totally didn’t deserve his kindness, but I accepted it, nonetheless.

“You’re… special, Lizzie… and you deserve a special guy… and if it’s not me… then…” he kicked the side of the bar awkwardly.

“I’m sorry,” was all I could think to say.

Oh llamas! What should I do? I did the only thing I should do. I got out my phone to text Rob.


Author Notes: Thanks for reading. Joseph autonomously accused Lizzie of cheating in the last chapter, and then on the same day, he came back over autonomously and apologized. And I’m leaving this on a teeny bit of a cliffhanger. Any thoughts about Lizzie’s next move? This chapter featured MINEZ‘ Sammy Sarafin and LegacySims2017’s Joseph Simself.

#25 How to Create an Awkward Situation (LASL)

Guilt was eating me a bit after my night with Rob, especially since I told Joseph I was going to do “this thing” whatever that was. At least, Rob asked me to be his girlfriend. I tried to weigh the pros and cons while practicing making drinks at the bar in the study. It was too early for alcohol. I knew it. But I needed something stiff. A Bernish coffee.

Rob was… ironically closer to my age despite being a dad. More established in his career as a mixologist. More direct. Handsome. Rocking the beard. We shared a love of music. He had a sweet dog. We could talk for hours. He was a night owl. And of course, he had the most beautiful little girl. He was a devoted father. But then there was the kid thing… and Carrie was so concerned about me replacing her mom. And yeah, there was Catarina, whom I still occasionally saw around the gym. Would she care if I was dating her ex? And he hated cats…which was weird, right?

Joseph was… Older. On the edge of an exciting new career. Easy on the eyes. Fun. Flirty. We definitely had chemistry, and I already knew he looked great without his shirt… mmm… that athletic build. More spontaneous. We shared an interest in sports and movies. We had the same favorite color. He didn’t have a kid so we didn’t have that coming between us. But he sent me mixed signals. He hadn’t defined our relationship. It was harder to know what he was thinking or wanting. He was a bit of a puzzle. And he was SO into those runs at the break of dawn.

We had all been texting back and forth.

Joseph wrote: » Had a really nice time at the museum. We should do it again sometime.

I wrote: » Thanks me too.

Rob wrote: » I think our date was a smashing success. You are incredibly fun to be with, Lizzie. 🙂

I wrote: » I had a lot of fun too.

Joseph wrote: » Wanna go jogging again in the AM, beautiful? Catch the sunrise? I’ll bring coffee.
Rob wrote: » Hey Lizzie, would you stop by the bar tonight? I miss you. I could get off early. Carrie’s with her mom. I thought maybe we’d bounce to Newcrest and hit up the new karaoke bar and then who knows? A midnight picnic by the waterfront? Under the stars? ❤
Plummit! Coffee? Stars? Really bringing the romance guys! I slammed my glass on the counter. Could I do both? AM sunrise jog and coffee with Joseph and evening karaoke and starlight picnic with Rob? Just my luck, Joseph stopped by right then. I ducked into the bathroom. I know… cowardly.
Nora let Joseph in and settled at the bar counter with her bowl of Fruity-O’s. They chatted for a few minutes, and Nora was her usual flirty self. Probably because I hadn’t gotten around to telling her about Joseph… I narrowed my eyes. …or Rob… or dating for that matter. Then again, she probably thought Joseph was fair game since she practically forced Rob to date me.
“Who is this?” Dad plopped down strategically between Nora and Joseph.
“Dad!” Nora rolled her eyes. “You know Joseph.”
“I know, I’m just teasing,” Dad replied. “Hey, Joseph, how are you?” he reached out to shake the man’s hand.
When Joseph returned the handshake, he was surprised when my father gripped a little harder.
What are you doing… here… so early in the morning?” he asked, looking down over the top of his glasses.
“Oh I’m meeting Lizzie,” Joseph replied. “We were going to go running.”
“Hey Joseph,” I returned to the study, coffee cup in hand, hoping to intervene before things got weirder.
“Say what?” Nora exclaimed. “Liz? You’re running now?”
“I didn’t know you took up running,” Dad added, surprised.
“Neither of you are dressed to go running,” Nora observed, her eyes narrowed. “What’s going on?”
Joseph looked down at his attire. “Would you look at that?” he chuckled awkwardly.
I made a face. “I can run if I want to.” I tightened my grip around the mug nervously. “Hi Joseph.”
“Hey beautiful,” Joseph greeted.
“Beautiful?” Nora repeated, spitting out her bite of cereal, spewing milk on the counter.
“Am I missing something?” Dad tilted his head to the side and laid his hands on the counter.
“Yeah, Lizzie and I are dating,” Joseph said, with the biggest, cutest smile on his face.
“But I thought she was dating Rob,” Nora remarked, placing her hands on her hips. “I gave him a pep talk and everything. Did Rob not show up?”
I groaned and smacked my forehead. Joseph gasped.
“Who’s Rob?” Dad asked.

Author Notes: Thanks for reading. So yeah… that happened. My Simself. *tsk tsk* This chapter featured LegacySims2017’s Joseph Simself. Excuse the weird formatting. I’m not sure what happened with this chapter. 

#24 How to Have a Second Chance at a First Date, Pt. 2 (LASL)

“I just want you to be happy,” Nora said.

“Oh, Nora, thank you,” I wrapped my little sister in a big hug. “I appreciate that.”

We were standing on the front patio. Nora wanted to ensure that I was settled in the dating department, even though she hadn’t had much luck herself.

Turns out our “hot neighbor (her words, not mine… I’m not into blondes) was a bit of a loner and wasn’t looking for romance. That, of course, didn’t deter my hopelessly romantic baby sister from trying to invite him over to everything from a family barbecue to a workout session on our balcony with the new-ish exercise equipment. Julian declined. So my sister took it upon herself to try and “fix” my love life to take her mind off her own dating troubles. I still hadn’t told anyone about Joseph yet. I wasn’t sure what we considered ourselves.

Family barbecue turned into fend-for-yourself barbecue. Lee was on a date with Sammy. Dad got a promotion at work. Nora took one look at the meat and thought she would be sick. She doesn’t like hot dogs that aren’t burnt. I don’t blame her. I actually like a good bit of carbon fried onto my hot dog. And Mom was in Newcrest. I plunked one charred and one moderately dark bratwurst onto my plate. Someone had already taken the condiments, save the Duetchsim mustard inside. I was happy. I love that stuff.

I caught sight of Sugar across the street. I hadn’t seen her since before Christmas so I enthusiastically ran across the street, lunch and all, to greet her.

“Hey Sugar! How’ve you been?”

“With the busyness of the holiday season past, I thought it best to take some time to recharge my own batteries. I have been working on a variety of skills, particularly painting as of late.”

“Sounds lovely. I’ve been working on a new novel. I just self-published Bunch Ado About Nothing on Atlantis and now I’m working on another teen fiction, Hart to Hart, about a teenager with awkward parents.”

“Send me the link.”

“Thanks a million, Sugar!”

“No problem.”

“Have you been working on your music at all?”

“Some… I’ve got a show this afternoon at the Solar Flare. Say… can you drop me off? I didn’t realize how late it was.”

“Sure. Do you mind coming in? I gotta change first. I have an interview I’m heading to actually. I might be interning for Nookstone News.” 

“Say that’s great, Lizzie!”

I neglected to add that Joseph, my new… something… acquired the interview for me. Sugar followed me inside and changed as well in the downstairs bathroom.

As I dropped Sugar off at Solar Flare, I felt a headache coming on. Strong pressure pushed and tugged at my temples. I was beginning to regret eating two bratwurst before my interview. Maybe that wasn’t the best idea.

Meanwhile in another part of town… Nora, my kid sister, was up to no good. Well, maybe not, no good… but she had a plan… and a plan that involved stalking, scheming, and a pep talk.

“Hey Nora,” Rob said. “I didn’t know you work out here.”

“Oh hey Rob… funny finding you… and Marshall… here… what a coincidence!”

Total lies. 

“Listen pal… there’s no easy way to say this so I’m just going to say it. My sister, Lizzie likes you. A lot. Like a lot a lot. And you could even say she cares about you and about Carrie.”

“Is that so?”

“Yes, and you are such a big jerk for breaking her heart.”

“Whoa! Whoa! Whoa! Who said anything about breaking hearts?”

“I did… and Lizzie… she moped around for weeks after you didn’t even give her a chance.”

“She did?”

“Yes. And you need to get with the picture. I know you have a kid and all and I know you’re worried about dating my sister with a kid, but she’s a great sister and a good person who has been a good friend to you and a fantastic babysitter for Carrie. Dare I even say… out of this world babysitter… and I’m saying you owe yourselves a chance to try.”

“Look sister, you don’t know…” Rob started, but Nora firmly cut him off.

“Get off the treadmill… get your butt upstairs to the showers, and put on some cologne for gosh sakes, and meet my sister at the Pizza Planet tonight. She’s gonna be there around seven. And I’ll watch Carrie for you… at a discounted rate and all… after my free advice, of course.”

“You can’t tell me what to do.”

“And Rob?”

“What?”

“My sister likes Old Spice.

“So you… um… like women’s basketball?”

Rob seemed nervous. It was a wonder. Literally thirty seconds before he showed, Nora confessed she asked him to meet us here, and then promptly decided to ditch us in favor of leave because she conveniently forgot she was hanging out with Julian. Nora had asked me to dinner tonight to celebrate my interview… which didn’t go great, but it didn’t suck either. I didn’t even have time to change since I came straight from Nookstone News so I was still dressed in my green skirt suit. Thankfully, I ditched the jacket in my car. I didn’t want to look too put together.

“Yeah, the Oasis Acres are pretty good,” I remarked, wondering if our cheesy bread order would arrive soon since I needed something to occupy my hands.

“Gah! They missed it! And such an easy shot too,” I grunted.

“Sorry. I don’t know much about the game.”

“It’s okay.”

“I do like this sweet bass in this halftime song,” Rob remarked, rubbing his hands nervously against his jeans.

I smiled, deciding to throw him a bone. After all, he had the guts to show up after my kid sister lectured him.

“Yeah, this song… it’s incredible. You haven’t heard of this group? Pentatonix?” I asked, my eyes lighting up. “They do everything acapella.”

“Really? Even that wicked percussion beat?”

“Yep.”

“And the bass?” Rob swung his head back at the television screen to catch the act.

“Yep… that guy…” I pointed. “His name is Avi.”

“Here…” I pulled out my phone. “I can show you other videos of theirs..” I gushed.

“Wow… they are talented.”

“…do you like British Invasion?”

“Sure.”

“Then you have to hear… it’s super powerful…” I trailed off, and grinned sheepishly. “Too much?”

“What? You? Naw…” Rob waved his hands. “I could go all day talking about music.”

“Hooray!” I threw my hands in the air. “Here…”

“Did I hear British Invasion?”

Cathy Tea plopped down at our table, without an invitation, but like she needed one. We were happy to have her join us.

“Yeah…you gotta hear it…” Rob enthusiastically pulled out his own phone and found the video to show off.

I couldn’t help but grin. I had converted yet another person to one of my favorite music groups.

“Hey, look! It’s Sugar! Now if you want to her some mind-blowing music, catch Sugar’s violin!”

“What are you all doing?” Sugar appeared, in her gorgeous evening attire.

She must have changed from earlier.

“Rob, this is my friend, Sugar Maple Bough… and oh, how clumsy of me… this is her roommate and my friend, Cathy Tea.”

“It’s nice to meet you,” Rob smiled.

“Sugar, what’s with the gown?” I asked.

“I’m playing a set later. CPE Bach. I transcribed his solfegettio for violin.”

 

“That’s awesome!” I exclaimed.

 

“Whoa! Transcription is an incredible skill,” Rob remarked.

 

“Thanks,” Sugar said, seeming embarrassed by the attention. “Do you play anything, Rob?”

 

“Not really. I noodle on the guitar every once in awhile. But what I really like to do is sing,” he replied.

 

“What?” my eyes widened. “You sing?”

 

“Yeah.”

 

“What do you sing?”

 

“Anything really… but I like… well… would you like to hear?”

Rob erupted into a Mr. Wonderful song, surprising us all, and shocking me, most of all. Who knew he had such talent! He even did all the voices. 

I’m gonna be a mighty king

So enemies beware!

Well, I’ve never seen a king of beasts

With quite so little hair

I’m gonna be the mane event

Like no king was before

I’m brushing up on looking down

I’m working on my ROAR

Thus far, a rather uninspiring thing

Oh, I just can’t wait to be king!

(You’ve rather a long way to go, young master,

if you think…)

We all clapped loudly when he was finished.

 

“Thanks,” Rob said.

 

“Mr. Wonderful!” I practically swooned.

 

“Well… I do have a kid,” he smiled and shrugged.

 

“Wow… Rob… a man of many hidden talents…” I said.

 

“That was impressive,” Sugar added.

 

“Nice!” Cathy exclaimed, squeezing my hand approvingly. “I like this guy.”

 

Yeah no kidding! 

 

“Now, excuse me, I feel that Blicblock game calling me,” Cathy said, standing up from the table.

 

“I’ll leave you two to your dinner,” Sugar said. “Nice to meet you Rob.”  

After we stuffed our faces with cheesy bread and pizza slices topped with earthy green bell peppers and hearty mushrooms, Rob and I retired to the couch to be more comfortable.

“You really do have a great voice,” I complimented.

“You think so?” Rob ducked his head toward his water glass in a bashful way.

“Absolutely,” I encouraged. “Have you thought about music as a career? Obviously, you’ve got the talent and the passion.”

“I don’t know…” he shrugged. “What if I just like mixing drinks?”

I laughed awkwardly. “You could do both.”

“I have to think about Carrie,” he remarked. “But it is a thought. It helps to know someone believes in me.”

 “Of course, Rob,” I replied, unsure about what else to say.

“It’s great to be out here tonight. You’re so easy to talk to and be with,” he smiled broadly.

“Why Rob! I think you paid me a compliment,” I said in mock fluster.

“Don’t joke,” he said, catching my hand. “I…mean it.”

“Thank you,” I flushed, dropping my gaze down to my hands.

I wasn’t sure how to act or what to say. Rob walked me down the stairs, his hand hovering over the small of my back. This was venturing quickly into dangerous territory.

“Well good night…”

“What? No goodbye kiss?” Rob teased from behind me.

“I…uh…” I stammered.

He didn’t want to date now,  he had said. Nothing serious.

“Lizzie, I think we should date.”

Or so I thought.

“What?”

I spun around as Rob approached me.

“We’d have fun together,” Rob explained. “My kid likes you, and that’s saying something. She hasn’t liked anyone I’ve dated since her mom.”

“So… uh… we should date because Carrie likes me?” I cocked my head in confusion.

“No… plummit! I’m not doing this right… uh…okay… I like you, Lizzie Green, and I know you like me too. Will you go out with me… as my girlfriend?”

What am I doing? I’m out with Joseph. I’m out with Rob. Joseph and I aren’t all that serious yet, but I enjoy being with him… and Rob… well, shoot! I enjoy being with him too. I can’t do this… to both of them. I need to pick, don’t I? Oh plummit! 

“You are amazing,” he breathed as he stepped back from the surprising kiss we just shared.

“Oh…” was all I could say.

Aww… plummit all to hell! 


Author Notes: Thanks for reading. I previously decided in another story to call the Beatles – The British Invasion in my Simworld because Simtannican Invasion didn’t quite have the same ring to it. LOL. Also I could figure out no way to give Pentatonix a good Simworld name befitting their music group so I left it in as is. I guess, Simterrans get Pentatonix all the way out in the Daleth system. Haha.

Why did I pick Pentatonix? Well, I’ve been looking for a way to slide their group into the story naturally, and when I heard their cover of Can’t Hold Us, I knew I had to add it, not to mention I’ve heard this song played at a basketball game, hence the tie-in.

In my Simworld, Mr. Wonderful is my version of Disney. I came across this amazing version of I Just Can’t Wait to Be King, and I threw it in here. Rob did spontaneously burst into song, and I didn’t know Sims could do that in TS4. It was so adorable, I had to throw that in there. 

The Oasis Acres are a play on the Las Vegas Acres women’s basketball team. And Lizzie autonomously kissed Rob after he kissed her… it would be cute, except now we have a love triangle. 😛 This chapter featured MINEZ‘ Julian DeBateau,  CathyTea‘s Sugar Maple Bough and Cathy Tea, and InfraGreen’s/Trip’s Rob Buckley and Marshall.