Thursday, August 22, 2013

Chapter 2.36- Something

          Day 1: Ignacio sleeps on. And while still a little sore and tired Layla is surprised at how easy it is to get up to take care of her baby daughter in the middle of the night. Sure, she’s groggy and has managed to tangle her foot in the sheet, but she’s more alert than she thought she would be.

          By the time she makes it to the top of the stairs Mariah is bawling her tiny head off, fists churning and legs flailing.

          “Oooooh,” she coos, entering quickly to pick up the wailing infant. Offering her little one a smile she draws her close and momentarily Mariah’s cries are soothed.

          Snuggling the warm little bundle near her warms her straight through and she’s again attacked by the thought that this is too easy. Phedra said it was hard, that she couldn’t make heads or tails of it, that Henry cried so much and it was so frustrating. But Layla’s caress seems to have quieted her little one quickly. Maybe she’d finally found something she was a natural at.

          But the moment she lowers Mariah her wailing begins again. Staring blankly at the wall, Layla runs through possibilities in her tired mind before remembering that she was likely hungry. After all, she hadn’t fed her and hadn’t her own mother mentioned middle of the night feedings before? Perhaps there was something in that.

          Plugging the bottle of greenish formula (Was that stuff really healthy or nutritious? How on Sim Planet did they ever discover that it’s what babies needed? Who would volunteer their infant for such an experiment?) Mariah continued to whimper for only a moment. Once she began to settle, eyelids dropping as she nursed the bottle, Layla’s confidence picked up again. It was easy.

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          When Layla rose again, the sun had already risen and Ignacio’s side of the bed was cold. There were dark circles under her eyes that weren’t usually there, and she had a sharp crick in her neck.

          Wondering at these anomalies brought back the knowledge that she was a mother. She’d forgotten. How could she forget?

          Hoping that Ignacio had taken care of their daughter this morning while she slept in, Layla went ahead and made the bed when a new thought hit her. Her Daddy would never know the little darling that lay in the crib upstairs.

          He’d been such a good daddy for her, he would have made a wonderful GrandDaddy as well. And while he knew of the existence of Henry, and had lived with Galen and Arden’s children, he’d missed out on Cyrus’ children and would now miss out on hers. It wasn’t fair.

          While cleaning up in Tiburcia’s room she spied the family photo the three of them had made before Mariah’s arrival. The thought that Buck should have been a part of that group hit her. She should have invited her father to visit. She should have made Cyrus patch things up. Unable to look any longer, she turned, crying into the bookshelf.

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          Looking out the nursery window Layla felt an intense desire to cry along with her daughter. The snow was finally beginning to melt with peeks of spring green showing in the landscape at last. She’d love to be out there gathering all that had been hidden by winter’s snow but she was inside, puzzling over why Mariah was still unhappy, tired after spending most of the night awake with the fussy baby.

          She’d fed her. She’d changed her. She’d cuddled her. What else was there? Why wouldn’t she stop crying?

          Deciding the infant was as bored as she, Layla put her in the swing attempting to play peek-a-boo.  But Mariah simply pouted, not amused by her mother’s play.

          “Come on Mariah! Mommy needs a nap! Be happy! Happy baby! Happy baby means happy Mommy! Sleepy Mommy needs a nap.”

          Helen had always told her how Buck would help her with the night shifts when she’d had her babies. How her Daddy was so great with kids. And it wasn’t that Ignacio wasn’t good. On the contrary he’d begged to take a share in the night feedings, but Layla insisted that she had to do it alone. That she could manage. That she was as good at this as any other woman.

          A sudden hush brought Layla up sharply. She was so tired. How long had this quiet been going on? Why was it so quiet? Looking at the swing she saw Mariah soundly sleeping. Was that why she’d been so fussy? Had she just been tired too? Deciding not to fix what was no longer broken, she went to take a nap herself hoping for more than an hour of sleep.

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          “So, a dance is coming up soon at school,” Tiburcia said, trying to be flippant and careless sounding. She had already made plans to show up with her bestie Emily so they wouldn’t be going alone.  

          “Oh,” holding back the great leap of panic he’d felt at his daughter’s words took a lot more self-control than he even knew he had. “I didn’ realize it was getting close.” That was a half lie. Ignacio’d known, but had pushed the information to the back of his brain not wanting to acknowledge that his little girl was old enough for such a thing as ‘School Dances.’

          “Yeah,” Tibi continued not noticing her father’s rather cool reception to the news. “Yeah, so can I have your credit card to go get a new dress and shoes?”

          “No,” Ignacio snorted into his dinner. “But you may come with me on a shopping excursion where you may purchase a dress and shoes with my approval and my money.”

          This time, it was Tiburcia who snorted. No one went with their Dads to shop for prom things. And Mom had no idea what fashion was. And anyway, she was so wrapped up in Mariah right now Tiburcia doubted she’d be able to drag her out of the house.

          But, she wanted the new dress. And she wanted the shoes.

          “Fine,” she said rolling her eyes. Parents just didn’t get it.

          Ignacio smiled.

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          Again, Layla was desperately trying to soothe a screaming Mariah. No matter what she did she couldn’t seem to calm the tiny girl sometimes.

          Deciding to try a bottle once more, she steeled herself, attempting to put her brightest tones into her voice to encourage her baby to take it and quit screaming.

          “Oh boy! It’s a bottle! Who’s a hungry little girl?” the bags under her tired eyes had become nearly permanent from the constant attention she slathered on her daughter.

          But Mariah didn’t want the bottle, putting out a tongue stained slightly green from her mother’s previous attempt to give her a bottle.

          Mariah returned to her wailing as Layla frantically sought to discover what made this little one such a fussy baby.

          It seemed like all she did was cry and she never did seem to be able to figure out just what was wrong with her little one.

          But her trials would be over soon she hoped. Just tomorrow, her little darling would age up and at last would be able to talk and tell them just what was wrong.

          And then perhaps, Layla could get some sleep, some time to herself outside, and some peace and quiet.

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          Sabria was the only one available to attend Mariah’s birthday. Everyone else in the Guerra family had had to work that evening. And the moment Sabria had entered the door, she’d done her best to get Ignacio alone in a corner giving him a sense of foreboding. To try and prolong whatever it was she was dying to tell him, he’d grabbed Mariah and pulled the cake out as quickly as he could.

          Besides, Layla was dead on her feet and maybe the sooner Mariah aged up, the sooner Layla would lay off of the relentless drive she’d had to take care of Mariah.

          Blowing the candle out for Mariah, Ignacio made his own wish. That Layla would quit her obsessing about the past and move forward along with their little girl.


Legs Appear! Hair sprouts! Suddenly, she has skin tone and coloring!

          In particular, she has her Grandmother Helen’s eye color. The same eye color as Phedra, and her son Henry.

          Mariah immediately leaves the others to the delights of birthday cake and goes off to explore the house on her newly grown legs.

 (Alt Caption: Because that’s an appropriate baby toy!)

          However, she isn’t allowed to explore her mother’s dusty, dirty finds for long as Sabria scoops the child up, pressing a hand against her soft bare arm momentarily before hurrying off to find either of the child’s parents.

          Finding Layla hadn’t partaken of the cake, but was instead silently staring out at the chilly spring night didn’t surprise Sabria one bit.

          “Now is not the time to get away,” Sabria said quietly, hoping not to startle Layla.

          Turning, Layla looked stonily at the older woman holding her daughter.

          “Again, because you need to hear this, now is not the time to get away,” repeated Sabria. “I know you want a break. I know you remember the islands you visited when you were younger and trying to discover yourself, but they do not hold the answers you seek.”

          Looking closely at Ignacio’s mother, Layla was surprised to see how much the other woman had aged. There were lines about her nose and mouth and her cheeks had sagged. Had so much time passed? When?

          “Oh,” Layla finally found her voice. “Oh, I’m not thinking of going anywhere. Just reminiscing.”

          “The islands will not bring back those you’ve lost, don’t forget it.”

          Attempting a weak smile, Layla nodded. Sabria was talking nonsense to her to get her attention. Layla was only thinking of going out to the island chain Phedra’s research team was on to talk to her sister face to face to apologize, to reunite, to escape. She wasn’t going to look for anyone she’d lost. She was going to find the one person who could ease her mind right now.

          Mariah fussed a bit and wriggled, reaching for her mother. Sabria handed her over silently, frowning. She’d just have to make sure Ignacio didn’t let her go.

          Cornering Ignacio was easy for Sabria this attempt.

          “Your little girl has brought things into sharper focus,” Sabria started the moment she’d caught him. “There are greater difficulties ahead than I have ever seen before.”

          “Mami,” Ignacio sounded weary. “Mami, she’s a baby still, barely crawling around. How can she be what brings these ‘difficulties’ to the surface?”

          “Son,” Sabria begged him to listen, to take her seriously as he used to do. “Ignacio, I have warned you long ago that there was a great possibility for you to be hurt by Layla. Not once, but twice. One of those times is near.

          “I’ve warned you to get her to talk through what she keeps bottled up. I’ve begged her to release her emotions. But neither of you have listened nor has there been a change and things are about to break. I’m not entirely positive, but Layla could break even. And it would break you. You’ve got to get her some help. Something has to change!”

          Ignacio looked at his mother, flipping through his thoughts to find some instance where he could say that Layla had not moved on. And he couldn’t all he saw was her attempts to be a great mother to their little girl. And so far, she had been. What was still amiss?

          “Mami,” he said slowly, forcing his words to sound true. “Everything is just fine.”

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          So I love Twallan’s new Play With Genetics Option in MC. Can you tell? Mariah is a fantabulous mix of features and colors from her entire family. So.Awesome.

And I beg pardon for the length of this one. The next one is a little shorter to make up for it. After that, let’s take a leap of faith, shall we?


  1. I don't know if it was intentional, since it's just one word, but your chapter title is a Beatles song. Yay!

    Anyway, Layla is trying, but the fact that her crap is still everywhere is a good indication that she's not 'fine'. Ignacio should listen to his mother on this.
    I don't like the sound of Layla taking off, =(

    I loved the scene with Tibi and her dad, talking about the dance. =D

    1. Lol. You know? I didn't even make that connection even though I've had Eight Days A Week stuck in my head for nearly two weeks now.

      Yeeeeaaaaah, she's not alright. She's just transferred her obsession from one thing to another. Ignacio is purposely trying to be blind to it all. He just sees she's really trying to be a Mom and that thrills him. Why question success?

      I loved that bit too. It's such a typical teenage way of thinking. We'll do it my way! And then begrudgingly go the other way just to "Get their way."

  2. I hope Sabria manages to get Igancio to take her warnings seriously and they manage to get Layla some help dealing with her issues.

    Tibi & Ignacio's talk about the dance and her dress was great - I hope we get to see their shopping trip!

    1. We're getting pretty close to a point where they'll all be forced to deal with it all and Sabria will decide that keeping her cards close isn't doing anyone any good either. Give me a week or so and we'll see it.

      Sadly, no! I'm sorry! I'd really like to get to include Tibi more often, and we'll see her a little more next time but no father daughter shopping trip. I've been working on another scene and set and I'm not sure I'd be up for the rigors of a shopping set. Ha!

  3. "“No,” Ignacio snorted into his dinner. “But you may come with me on a shopping excursion where you may purchase a dress and shoes with my approval and my money.”" - I. Died.
    What was with the correct pronounciation of all of that?! :p
    Loved that little scene there, really shows how reluctant Iggy is to lose his oldest baby girl.

    As has already been mentioned, Layla is throwing herself into motherhood and acting fine, but the clutter really speaks volumes. I hope Iggy gets her some help before whatever Sabria is hinting at happens.

    Mariah is pretty cute, and a good blend! Wow. Gotta try that new MC feature for my next generation for sure! Tibi is very expressive, too. Love when sims are like that :)

    So... Layla was thinking about going island hopping looking for Phedra? Does she realise that would mean she'd essentially be doing what Phedra did? The same thing she's so against and cut up about? I'm sure Phedra will get round to phoning her back soon! Well, hopefully she does before Layla does something she'll regret!

    1. He said it that way because it wasn't an offer. Ha! It was a demand. It would happen that way whether she wanted it to or not if she wanted to attend the dance. I don't think Iggy will ever really lose Tibi. Those two had to lean on each other for so long I'm not sure I could break them apart.

      Yeah, the clutter remains in copious amounts all over the downstairs no matter how much "better" Ignacio thinks she's doing. She's just transferred her obsession from one thing to the next. We'll get some help with that soon. It just might not be a happy help.

      Yes! Try it. It's so nice to be able to pick the pretty and still see grandparent features along with parental features. I love it!

      Nope. She's obsessed with 'making it right,' as she sees it. And while her methods were to suffocate Mariah with her attentions have largely succeeded (at the sake of her getting proper rest) she's still not completed her goal and she's determined to do that. I hope Layla doesn't do anything she regrets too. We'll just have to see how the cookie crumbles.

  4. OMG! Look at all those flowers! When is someone going to smack some sense into her about that stuff!

    It is sweet to see Layla falling into motherhood more easily than she'd thought, and how touched she is by her baby daughter. Good question! Who on earth did figure out that green slop is good for babies?

    Awwww. Buck really would've made a wonderful grand daddy =(

    LOL isn't that one of Gem's sims in the portrait on the wall?
    I can understand her being upset that she never even invited her parents. She could have. Helen only told her not to come back, not that they couldn't come there. But then, I got the impression that Helen was pretty frail in those final "years", so it might not have been feasible at all.

    Silly Layla. You can accept help, and still be 'as good as any woman' at being a mother. Your dad helped on night shifts, remember?

    o.O Damn. I should've used Tibi's trick when I was that age. Asking for the credit card, which would be an obvious No, and getting Dad to offer to buy it himself. Well played, Tibi, well played.

    Oohhh pretty Mariah! Look at those bright green eyes! At least Sabria was able to come for her birthday. Although I see Sabria has a new little medium, lol.

    Oh Sabria. I'm just not sure that advice is getting through. Layla is blinded by herself, and perhaps things she herself doesn't even know yet, and all Iggy sees is that she's been a diligent mother. Is it possible that Sabria has discerned something that Layla doesn't know yet?

    1. At first I was like "Flowers? Where? They're everywhere! Which flowers?" And couldn't figure out what room. *facepalm. I can't wait to get rid of them.

      I have no idea. Ha! And who volunteered their baby for that experiment?

      Yes. Yes it is. It fits the color scheme nicely. lol

      I don't think Tibi was expecting Dad to buy it for her like that. I honestly think she thought she could ask and would receive. Well, technically, she is indeed receiving, just now the way she'd anticipated. Ha!

      Yup! Tibi gets what's going on now and isn't around all the time, so Mariah to the rescue to clear up those niggling little questions. Sabria is really trying not to be the bull in the china shop with this. She's trying to respect that Layla is a little fragile still and that Ignacio truly cares for her. But what she does know is becoming clear enough that to her it's urgent. At which point though, she herself is tormented with a "Should she interfere or not?" dilemma. Forcing interference might change the course of things which would make her prediction wrong and earn further scorn from Ignacio for her butting in. But she knows what will happen if she doesn't press the issue too much. What would you do?

  5. Tough call. I'd say, what Iggy may think if her prediction is wrong should be a low priority, but then there's the very large question of what may go wrong if she does attempt to interfere. She could make it worse. I have to respect the fact that she's trying to respect everyone in this situation, but that really would be a big dilemma in this case since she knows *something* bad is about to happen.

    1. That is true. She absolutely could make it worse. And it could be that that keeps her back from forcing this on her son. No matter what, he'd have to accept something in order for her telling them anything outright to work. She's tried telling them now several times and both time both of them have simply brushed her off. It's a really big dilemma for her in the end, and one that in many ways is just out of her hands.

  6. Why do psychic predictions love to circle around above our heads like vultures with their doom and gloom? Why can't they be about puppies, rainbows, and unicorns? (Well, discounting the nightly unicorn visits with Helen, but even that unicorn prediction was doom and gloom) 'Circling around our heads' also makes me think of deerflies. Those things are I accidentally swallowed on once, and I immediately got that song in my head. I'm getting off topic again.
    Back to Sabria. Don't get me wrong; I like her! But those doom and gloom predictions make me want to shove her face into the wall. Shut up and let me live my life! I'm going to make mistakes! It's just what happens! Oh, I get it, really. She's trying to protect them all, mostly Ignacio. /sigh. Sadly, in many cases, trying to protect the ones you love can be the catalyst that pushes them to make the mistake(s).

    'Appropriate child's toy' LOL!

    You know, I've seen the 'play with genetics' thing in MC, but I've been too chicken to try. What does it do?

    1. Damn phone. Reply the third commences now with Katy Perry's firework and little girl tap shoes... Blah. Dance mom time is tough. Ha!

      Because if they predicted nothing but happy they'd get far fewer repeat customers! xD Sabria (my phone keeps wanting to auto correct to Sangria. Lol) has made her living and her name giving people their very own mystery to solve. She's forgotten that outside of her business she could tell it straight instead of just frustrating Ignacio to no end.

      So.many!toys. All so appropriate. Ha!

      Ooooo! I love this feature. For me, CAF never lets me pull in more than 2 sims as genetic donors. This lets you pull in something like 16 (it might be 12 or 8. Can't remember.) And use all of them to pull genetics from. So you could put in aunts and uncles or great grandparents to bring back features/colors that have bred out or to give greater weight to certain features. Clones are still possible, but just hit the button again until you get a blend you like. I usually do it in a special separate save, then save the result I like to the bin to drop onto the toddlers. Love that feature.

    2. I played with it, separate save like you just described, because my 4th gen heir is almost a clone of the 3rd gen, but I couldn't let myself keep it because I felt like I was cheating. I know all it is is merely acting like a different genetic outcome happened instead of that one, but I couldn't keep it. Stupid overactive conscience.

    3. Nah! Totally not cheating. Only if you're changing traits/favorites/skill/money/motives something like that. You're always entitled to change their looks however you wish. Really. It's been so long I doubt I could find the conversations regarding it, but they are there on the thread when it comes to changing how anyone looks. Especially if your sim falls for a face one. You can't help that your sim loves their personality (especially since in Sims3 that's all attraction is about! lol) when they don't have an original feature on their face. So no overactive conscience. It's allowed. =D

    4. Oh, the actual rules! No, that's not what I meant. Hehe. I just meant like I couldn't let myself NOT have the original genetic product of the parents. Naw, one of the things I love about doing the legacies is that it's challenging.

    5. Aaaaaah. Okay. I get it now. Aw. Oh well. At least you played with it! :)

  7. Mariah turned out adorable! Really nice mix of genetics!

    1. She's an awesome mix of genetics! I'm so happy with how she came out.