Monday, January 14, 2013

Chapter 1.15

Chapter 1.15- The Questioner

                “You were in the paper today you know,” Helen had caught Buck right as he arrived home from work. In the end, he had kept the job at the graveyard after the caretaker had called in tears and promised to never pull such a prank again. He had also apologized over and over and offered a long overdue raise and promotion to sweeten the deal.
                “In the paper?” Genuine confusion is all over his honest face.  “What did I make the paper for?”
                “Seems someone caught a shot of you during our little fire,” giggled Helen.
                “We are getting a smoke detector tomorrow, right?”
                It was too much for Helen who burst out laughing. “Yes!”

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                Buck got up early to snag Phedra from her crib. He was in charge of keeping Cyrus entertained outside of the house while Helen would take care of the little girl. Buck would miss her that day.

                Phedra allowed him to dress her without a fuss then asked to be carried.
                “I has to say to you,” Phedra lisped. “I get you ear.”
                She reached up and wrapped her little arms around his neck, pulling his head close.

                “I keep you, Daddy,” Phedra stage whispered into Buck’s ear.

                Buck returned her hug, little bubbles in his brain exploding happily. He’d put in a lot of effort with Phedra lately, which wasn’t at all easy. Usually, Helen snatched the little girl and guarded her jealously. Only as her pregnancy had progressed had she started sharing her with Buck. He’d used the opportunities it had provided well, and Phedra had warmed up to him considerably.

                “You know what?” he asked. “I think I’ll keep you too.”

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                The sink was going out the door today. As were the cabinets and stove and the bathroom would be gutted today and still Helen continued to scrub anxiously at it all.
                “Hey, Buddy,” Buck was happy to see that Cyrus had already eaten. “I thought we’d spend the day outdoors.”

                “Yeah,” Cyrus replied. “Yeah, we’re going to the pond, right? So you can teach me how to fish?”
                Buck was nervous with the little boy around the water. What if he fell in? What if the kid wanted to go swimming?

                “Actually, I thought we’d spend the day at the park,” Buck tried to make it sound as exciting as he knew how. “I’ll push you on the swings, we can jump on the trampoline together, play in the sand box…”

                Bucks voice had trailed off under Cyrus’ stern look. How did that kid learn his mother’s expressions so well?
                “You said you would teach me how to fish.”
                He had said that. Buck had told that to Cyrus when he had assumed he would be a toddler forever, never going to be big enough to manage a rod.

                “Well,” Buck tried to scramble for a plausible excuse. “Well, see, I thought the park would be a better idea. It has bathrooms, and grills, and we’d probably be a lot more comfortable there-”
                Hormones got the best of Helen.
                “He’s scared of water, he’s scared you’ll fall in, he doesn’t want you to get hurt. Buck is going to take you fishing if you promise to be good and listen to everything he tells you. Geez. And you’ve got an hour before the crew gets here to work on the house. Get out.” She hadn’t even looked up from cleaning all the invisible germs from the sinks surface.

                Cyrus didn’t even know what to say.
                “Let’s go fishing!” Buck forced a toothy grin.

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                At least 50 feet from the water Buck stopped. They could still see the house and Buck needed to compose himself before getting any closer with Cyrus in tow.
                “Will our lines even reach from here?” Cyrus had seen Buck fish enough that he knew this was not a good place to stand at to fish.

                Watching Buck staring at the water annoyed Cyrus. He was ready to try out his new pole, and Buck couldn’t stop him.
                He took a deep breath and started running down to the water. Watching the boy go without him finally got Buck to move his feet, too. It wouldn’t do for Cyrus to get to near the water while running and maybe fall in.

                Buck helped him bait his hook, and get his line set and ready to cast. It was painful that Cyrus had grown up so quickly. At least Phedra was still little, and there was a new baby on the way to help him remember that they really didn’t grow up too quickly at all.

                No matter how many times Buck told him that you had to be patient, and that the fish would come when they were ready Cyrus couldn’t help but reel in his line frequently, expecting that the tug of the water was really a fish on the end.

                “You’ve gotta be patient, Cyrus,” Buck was sure he’d said that 10 times in the last 5 minutes.
                “You’re catching stuff,” Cyrus accused.
                “I’m patient,” Buck drawled the words out, trying to emphasize his point.

                Watching the fish leap around their floaters, it dawned on Cyrus that something wasn’t quite right about some of the fish…

                “Are there supposed to be pufferfish swimming in the pond?” Cyrus could have sworn that they were supposed to live in oceans.
                Scrambling, Buck stayed quiet a moment, trying to make his brain work. That was kind of odd, how did he miss that?
                “It would seem that somebody put them in here as a prank,” Buck said. “I guess. Maybe we oughta change spots. Lemme teach you about how to spot a good fish bed.”

                “Why didn’t we start with that lesson?” Cyrus asked. He had a question ready for everything.
                Buck blinked.
                “Cause I needed to see if you were keeping a fisherman’s eye out, that’s why,” he was proud of his answer there.

                Buck led the way to a spot where the fish were jumping that was between a cypress tree and some bulrushes. There was lots for fish to love about this spot.

                It didn’t take long for Buck to bring in a lovely rainbow trout. He could smell it frying already.
                “Ew,” Cyrus said. “Ew, you put your finger in it's mouth?”
                “How else do you get it off the hook?”
                “Isn’t it covered in germs?”
                “Of course it is!” Buck was hearty in his praise of dinner. “Tasty germs!”

                “Do you know how to cook it?” Cyrus the questioner asked.

                This question, however, brought Buck up short of a ready answer.

                The lack of an answer was not lost on Cyrus.
                “You do know how to cook it right?”
                Buck hated lying to children.
                “Course I know how to cook fish.” His mother had been the cook, then Helen had taken over. He’d never had much to do in a kitchen.

                “Will you start another fire?” Cyrus continued questioning. “’Cause that was cool.”
                It wasn’t a memory Buck wanted to relive much.
                “They’re installing smoke detectors, today.” Buck’s voice was flat. “Besides, I didn’t start the last one.”

                There was no answering question from Cyrus, so Buck assumed the boy had let it go for now.

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                “This looks better,” Buck and Cyrus had finally returned from their fishing trip.
                “It’s not white,” Helen was bordering on hyperventilating. “So that’s better. I just wish they could have finished the bedrooms today too.”
                “Aw, they’ll get taken care of tomorrow,” Buck tried to comfort her.
                “I know… And I have good news. I sold another photograph from the cemetery to a different tabloid. So, I upgraded the beds I had ordered. Now we’ll only have to change them out once, instead of twice.”

                “Why didn’t they didn’t change the couch like you said they would?” Cyrus didn’t even bother to take his eyes off the tv.
                Buck grabbed her to try and keep her calm.
                “They said there was a shipping mistake,” her voice quivered.
                “It’s just the hormones, it’s just the hormones,” Buck soothed, pulling her close.
                “You’re right. They said they’ll deliver it tomorrow with the beds.” Helen attempted a brave smile for Buck.
                “Why don’t you guys get a room?” Cyrus asked, again not turning around.
                “Always a question for everything,” Helen said.

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                “Why don’t you fall when you cast your line?” Ever the questioner, Cyrus even had one after landing on his rear, his rod in the water the next morning.
                “Takes practice,” Buck said slowly. “You’ll get the hang of it.”

                Smiling to himself, Buck remembered when he’d do the same as a child. Putting too much forward motion in your arms could unbalance anyone.
                “You’re getting there, Cy,” said Buck. “It’ll happen less and less as you get older.”
                “How much longer is that?”
                “However long it takes.”

                In the end, Cyrus’ practice was rewarded as he landed a nice trout. It excited him as nothing other than the fire had.
                “I got it! I got it!”
                Buck laughed and stowed the fish in their bucket. When they got home, he’d show him how to clean it.
                “Can we go home now?”
                Didn’t take long before the questions started again.
                “Not until your Mama gets the house back in order,” he sighed. “We don’t want to be in the way.”

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                Helen had called them home earlier than he had expected.
                Buck stood looking around the living room and kitchen, Cyrus was still cleaning himself up after cleaning his fish.
                “I thought they were just doing bedrooms and the couch today?”
                “They did those things. I just asked for a few other changes in here as well,” Helen had actually shooed the workers off early. She’d been feeling off and wanted to be left alone.

                “I can’t wait to show you our bedroom,” Helen blushed a little. “I know you’ll like it.”
                “Who’s that guy in the picture? Why don’t you guys get a room?”
                “I’ll tell you later,” said Helen. “We’re going to get a room.”
                “Why didn’t you guys get a room last night, too?”
                “Go play, Cyrus.”
                “Can I go to the park?”
                “Why not?”
                “She could have just told me.”
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                 Lilac is Buck’s favorite color.

                Labor is not Buck’s favorite anything.
                “Will you just call a cab and the sitter?” Helen grunted with a contraction. “Please?”


                Getting Buck dressed in between contractions wasn’t easy. But, somehow, she managed to do it as well as call a sitter and a cab. Best of all, he’s stopped screaming.
                “Hey,” Helen stops on the way out the door. “The sitter will be here any minute. We’re going to the hospital to have this baby. Keep an eye on Phedra while we’re gone, ok?”
                “Why do I have to watch Phedra?”
                “Just watch her.”
                Cyrus is excited for the new baby brother or sister, but even more excited the babysitter is coming. She’s lots of fun and lets him break all the rules.
                “You hear that, Fay?” asks Cyrus. “Lana is coming to watch us, ok?”
                After that, he promptly forgot all about Phedra.
                However, Phedra was worried. She wandered all over the house looking for her mom and Buck. She’d heard his yelling, and Mama yelling back. Something must be wrong. She’d have to make sure Mama was alright.

                “I find Mama.”

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Transition chapter. I wanted to establish a bit of a personality for Cyrus before the birth, though. He's got story out the ears on the way. I also needed to address why I redid almost all of the house. She really did get photos of ghosts in the graveyard and sold them. I didn’t know this, but those photos go for like §20k a PIECE in game. So suddenly they were rolling and I didn’t want them to move houses because of a future roll. They got upgrades instead. It was a two day renovation as I spent all their money the first day, then she sold another photo of 5 ghosts for even more simoleans than the first. Also, ignore the paint job around the pond (actually... ignore it almost everywhere.) I've fixed it (finally,) but have no idea how to update the paint job on my world in game. 'Sides... I'm a s     l     o     w world builder.
Stay tuned and follow Phedra's day next chapter!


  1. Buck is so good with the ,kids. I d'awwed at his snuggle scene with Phedra, and I loved the fishing scene with Cyrus.

    I hope Pheda doesn't get hurt or anything, wandering around on her own. Can't wait to see the new baby.

    1. I'm glad you liked it. I just wish there were a few more facial expressions for sims who are fishing. Here's betting I start figuring out how to use a pose player in the near future!
      Next chapter is a lot more of Phedra wandering. Just a FYI, she did that on her own. I was shocked.

  2. Wow, I hope the babysitter spots Phedra on the way! :/

    I think we've established now that Buck is my favorite character. I love how good he is with the kids! You wouldn't think it when you look at how terrified he is of almost everything.
    I love that you said Helen had to dress Buck haha, she does seem like that kind of tough woman who can handle just about anything :)

    What world is this? I'm guessing you made it? Is it available for download?

    Also, I've never really played around with photography. Only used the camera in WA worlds and I'm not sure if it's related, but not even bought the camcorder from generations!! Haha, I really need to explore the game more, there is SO much I've not tried, I may as well just have base game really lol

    1. I made it for my nothing is free challenge with the personal specification that it's a routing dream. I figured it would be the best way for me to get landscaping and such done. Only I got bored painting it properly (and putting in enough trees) and just started playing. Now I've got a family in it. Oh well... The photography skill is something I'm still getting used to as well. the cameras in game can be a little awkward and difficult to get a good shot with. There are dozens of ghosts out in the graveyard any given night and it still took me quite a bit to get her lined up and fiddle with her camera in game to get those shots. Oh well. I use a different save game to "explore" if you will. It where I'm messing about with an equestrian, a witch, a singer, an acrobat, different story progression settings, etc. It can help a lot. It's how I FINALLY figured out how to do holiday lights on the houses.

  3. I enjoyed the fishing trips, especially the way Cyrus never stopped asking questions :) I hope Phedra's going to be ok wandering off like that

    1. It actually got a little tough coming up with new questions for him to ask. He's very curious that's for sure. You'll get to see just how well Phedra fares next chapter. It's... um... interesting. ;)

  4. "It's just the hormones" --words to never say to a hormonal woman, lol.

    "Labor is not Buck's favorite anything" --another LOL

    and omg about Phedra wandering off!

    1. My husband would use those words when I was about to become unhinged because I found a dust bunny or something else totally irrelevant when I was pregnant with #2. Otherwise, ITA. Any other pregs and I would be mad for days when he'd try it. The last one I think I threatened to leave his 'hormonal butt.' He still likes to remind me. lol

  5. Phedra!! Where are you going?! I love her interactions with Buck. It was the sweetest thing when she called him daddy and said she'd keep him. Great chapter. Can't wait to see the new BABY!!!

  6. Thanks for the great middle-of-the-night entertainment! I have what I call the ADHD flu (it can't sit still in one area and make up its mind!) Now, I just hope this comment will make sense. Maybe I've already ruined it.

    "I'll keep you." Toddlers say some funny stuff! I love it when Buck said, "I'll keep you too." HA! Buck, you're a genius.
    Yeah, um, don't talk about it 'just being the hormones' to a pregnant woman. That's a good way to get punched in the nose. I'll show YOU hormones! *whack* I was surprised she responded so nicely, but then, she was in a strange mood anyway.

    Baby on the way! It is Buck's baby, right? Oh yeah, yeah. Dunno why I asked.

    Wow, so Phedra did that on her own?

    1. No, I get it! A little here, a little there, else your brain goes everywhere. Yeah. lol

      Kids really do say the darndest things. For instance, my 7 year old says tonight "When the world first started and Mama was a little girl." I am older than time to her. HA!

      I will always chalk up her response to prelabor bliss. L.O.L.

      She did that all on her own. I just sat back and spammed C. Crazy sims.