1.8: Journey


A/N:  Since the last update, I’ve had a few problems with my game and some of my saves.  Things might look a bit different in this chapter than they did in the previous ones.  My apologies.



I felt as though I’d been slapped in the face, or doused with icy water.  “My sister?  She’s….alive?  How do you know where she is?”

“She’s alive and well, Fisher.  I asked my mother to find her.”

“Your mother, the goddess?”  I wasn’t able to kept the venom from my voice.

“Yes.”  Rebecca returned my gaze steadily.

I decided to let that part of the subject drop.  I had to find out more about what Rebecca claimed she knew.  “And you’re just going to tell me?  Just like that?”



“Why wouldn’t I?”

“Well…I thought you needed me to stay here.  Why would you tell me something that would be sure to send me away?”


Rebecca frowned sadly.  “You must think I’m some kind of monster.  I swear to you, Fisher, I never meant to hurt you in any way.   When I told you I loved you, it was the truth.  I know how important your sister is to you…I only wish I’d thought to ask Mom about her sooner.  When you said you assumed she was dead, I guess I just assumed the same.  But she isn’t.  She’s in a place called Glendalough, several months’ journey from here, to the north.”

As hard to believe as it was, everything inside of me instantly knew Rebecca was telling the truth.  My own emotions tangled in my throat, and I emitted a sound halfway between a sob and a laugh.  She’s alive!  Fasjin’s alive!  I am not alone!  I felt like the joy of the knowledge would burst out of me if I didn’t let it out, so I began to laugh.  It started small, and then grew to huge guffaws.  I couldn’t remember ever feeling so elated.  I grabbed Rebecca’s hands and swung her around in circles until we both got dizzy and fell onto the soft blanket of flowers that covered the meadow.

My happiness was infectious, and Rebecca was laughing with me, now.  The fact that she had misled me since I got here–or even before that, come to think of it; I knew she must have had something to do with my strange need to find this place–all that seemed so unimportant now in the face of what she had just given me.  I had hope again, and it was all because of this beautiful woman.  Before I knew what I was doing, my mouth was on hers, sharing in the most primal way the joy that I felt at that moment–showing her how grateful I was.


I hadn’t anticipated that she would kiss me back, but she did…with enthusiasm.  And my excitement increased in a new way.  Suddenly I was on top of her.  Her fingers tugged anxiously on my shirt until I pulled away from kissing her long enough to remove it.  She took the opportunity to remove her shirt as well, and at that point I lost the ability to think, and to breathe.

The morning’s first light washed over us as we made love there in the meadow.


Afterwards, Rebecca turned away from me and began to get dressed.  Her shoulders shook though, so I gently touched her arm so she would look at me.  Her cheeks were stained with tears.


“Did I hurt you?”  I asked worriedly.

“No,” she assured me.  “I’m just…I’ll miss you.  The thought that I’m never going to see you again–“  She shook her head and pulled away from me again, unwilling to look into my eyes.

“Rebecca,” I said quietly, “you really do love me, don’t you?” 

She snorted through her tears.  “I’ve only been trying to tell you that all night, you big dope.”

“I love you, too,” I told her, and I realized that even after everything, I meant it with all my heart.  Before she could get too hopeful, though, I continued.  “But I need to find my sister.  She’s the only family I have left.”


Though her tears continued to fall as I held her close, Rebecca nodded and assured me that she never expected me to stay once she told me where Fasjin was.

“I have to go,” I agreed, “but I’ll come back.”

Rebecca’s eyes met mine uncertainly, but I just nodded and leaned closer for a long, tender kiss.  “I love you, and I swear I’ll come back.”

As I gathered my belongings and began the first few steps of what was sure to be a long journey, I could have sworn I heard Rebecca whisper: “I just hope it won’t be too late.”



The trek up the mountain and out of the valley took less time, and was far easier, than I had expected, thanks to my newfound hope that I’d see Fasjin again.  Still, it was several days before I made it to the first town.

Life for everyone outside of Hidden Springs seemed as bleak as it had been months ago, when I’d last visited this place.  The people were gaunt, with hollowed cheeks and eyes devoid of light.  Unlike Hidden Springs, where fruit-bearing plants and lively fish and game were plentiful, the people here struggled each day to find enough for their families to eat.

I’d brought as much dried fish as I could carry with me out of Hidden Springs, and even some tomatoes and other vegetables, though I knew those wouldn’t last long.  I had hoped I would have enough to last several months, if I rationed it.  That way, I could move quickly without having to stop to gather berries or catch more fish.

Instead, I found myself giving away my rations to the thin children I saw on the streets of each town I passed.  Just a little here and there, but I hoped it made a difference for them. 


Either way, I ran out of food about three months into my journey.  I was forced to create a make-shift shelter by a river and spend some time trying to replenish my store of fish.  I hadn’t forgotten how much more difficult it was to catch anything outside of Hidden Springs, and I wasn’t surprised that it took me several days to catch enough to preserve and to trade for other things I needed.

It was one night during this time, while I struggled to fall asleep inside my lean-to of pine boughs, that I began to feel…different.  One moment, I couldn’t stop my teeth from chattering, and the next, I was sweating so much that I felt like throwing off my blanket and dousing myself in the river to cool down.  I knew it was a fever, and I hoped that it wouldn’t amount to much more than that.

After that night passed, I did feel better.  Relieved, I packed my backpack and began heading north again.  Over the next month, though, as I neared the halfway point of the trip to Glendalough, the fever returned often.  It would usually hit me at night, and then be gone by morning. 

At first I thought it was just the weather, and the fact that I had been living in a cozy cottage for so long that I wasn’t used to sleeping outside.  But, as the chills and hot flashes began to come more frequently, and began to last longer, another fear washed over me.


I remembered a story from my childhood.  A story my mother used to tell me–about my biological father and his race.

Could it be? I thought to myself wildy, in the midst of feverish near-delirium.  It was only that one time…

But once is all it takes, I knew.  As weeks went by and I made little progress, and felt worse and worse, my certainty grew until I could no longer deny the truth.


I had left part of myself with Rebecca, after all.

Styx, Where’ve You Been?!

Short answer: working.

Longer answer:  I swore it wouldn’t happen to me.  I wouldn’t be one of those sim-bloggers who lets life get in the way of her hobby.  Unfortunately, it just isn’t that easy a resolution to stick to once real life takes over.  My work schedule means that between work and family time, I get just about zero free-time during weekdays.  Lately, we’ve been really busy during weekends, too, doing family stuff.

That combined with the problems I’ve been having with my game has made it pretty much impossible to get an update out for any of my stories.

I have, however, been writing (by hand, on paper) during my lunchtime at work–a new story that’s been jostling for position in my head for a few weeks.  I’m not sure if I’ll be able to publish it any time soon, but I guess I just wanted to say I’m still writing.

While I now fall into the realm of one of those bloggers who let real life get in the way and take forever to update, I can’t say I’m as unhappy about that fact as I thought I would be.  I love my new job.  I never thought I’d be able to get a job to which I actually look forward to going every day, but I thank my lucky stars that I managed to.  I feel, if anything, closer to my family now that I’ve started working, because it forces me to appreciate all the more the time I do have with them in the evenings and mornings, and on weekends.

That said, I’m putting my blogs on mostly-hiatus, meaning they’ll each be updated whenever I get the chance…but I’m not going to stress about it, because then it kind of loses the whole point of a hobby.  I will do my best to keep up with the blogs I read, too, though I’ve been horrible about that lately, as well.

Thank you all for your patience!

1.7: The Way


A/N: Some adult content in this one.

I hefted my pack a little higher on my back as I strode towards Horse’s pen.  Rebecca hadn’t followed me out of the cottage, and for that I was grateful.  The stars were half-covered by clouds, and the moon was just a sliver in the sky, making the night nearly as dark as my mood.

She was using me. 

I’d never felt more foolish.  I’d actually let myself fall for Rebecca, and the whole time I was nothing but a pawn to her.  Why hadn’t I seen it?  I was almost as angry at myself as I was at her.   Almost.


Horse nickered at me sleepily as I approached.  I reached through the opening in the door of the pen and stroked her velvety nose.  “Come on, girl,” I said softly, rolling the wooden door open.  “We can’t stay here any longer.”

But when I attempted to saddle Horse, she deftly side-stepped to avoid it.  “Stop that,” I snapped.  “We have to go!”  No matter how many times I tried, however, she was having none of it.

“Fine!  I don’t blame you!  I wouldn’t want to leave, either.”  My tone was angry and hurt.  I turned to walk from the pen, and I felt Horse nuzzle my back.  “I’ll miss you too,” I whispered in response.

Hardening my heart, I set off toward the mountains on foot.



“Mom, I need you!” Rebecca called desperately through her tears.  She knew it was difficult for her mother to appear on Earth in physical form anymore, but there were other ways to communicate…and she was so lost.

The mirror in front of her shimmered for a moment, and suddenly, Elina’s face gazed back at her instead of her own.  “I see you’ve finally decided to consult me.”

“I’ve made a mess of things,” Rebecca said, ashamed. 

Elina tsked.  “Dear one, I never suggested that you be anything other than honest with him.”

“I just thought…if I told him the truth, he wouldn’t believe me.  I thought he might walk away.  I had hoped if I eased him into it…”

“That maybe he’d fall in love with this place and forgive your dishonesty?”

Rebecca bowed her head and whispered, “Or that he’d fall in love with me, as I have fallen in love with him.”


Elina’s visage softened.  “He does love you, child.  You’re not too blind to see that, are you?  When you asked me to show you the man who was your soul mate, I made no mistake.  He is the one.  But it is not something that can be forced.  If you really love him, Rebecca, you have to let him go.”

Rebecca took a deep breath and nodded.  “I want to do better by him than that, Mom.  I owe it to him, for the mess I’ve made of things.  But I need your help again.”


It didn’t take me long to reach the mountainside which I had descended into the valley weeks ago.  It felt like a lifetime ago. 

I had been striding purposefully toward this place, stewing in the anger and pain I was feeling, so caught up in my thoughts that I hadn’t considered what I would do when I reached my destination.  As the cliff-like wall rose up in front of me, I realized it would be dangerously stupid to attempt the climb in the dark.


Guess I’m sleeping under the stars tonight.  I had done the same almost every night for years during my travels, but the past few months had spoiled me.  I ‘d become  used to the soft double bed in the cabin.  That life of luxury is over, idiot.  I knew I’d have a good many aches and pains the next morning after sleeping on the lumpy ground, but I’d have to get used to it again.  I didn’t foresee a bed in my near future. 

What will I do now? I wondered sadly as I made a nest of pine needles on which to sleep.  I didn’t know the answer to that, but I tried my best to put it out of my mind.  I’d figure it out in the morning.

Exhausted from the events of the evening, and probably partly because of the alcohol I’d drank at the bar with Ambrose, I dropped into my dreams within moments.  As all my dreams had been recently, this one was about Rebecca.


Rebecca, smiling at me.

Rebecca, sobbing and reaching out for me.

Rebecca’s lips pressed against my own.

Rebecca, turning away from me, arms crossed in anger.

Rebecca above me, moaning and writhing in the throes of passion.


And then suddenly, I awoke, and she was there.  She crouched over me, having shaken me awake just as dawn was breaking over the horizon.  Had she stepped out of my dream?  In that moment between waking and sleeping, I thought she had.  My memories of the dream-events took hold, and I reached up to caress her face.

She jerked away, as if afraid my intentions were to hurt her.

Then, reality crashed its way back in.  Rebecca and I were over before we’d begun.  She didn’t love me.  She used me.  I sat up, took my coat from the ground where I’d been using it for a pillow, and put it on.  My movements were rough and hasty.  I didn’t know what she was doing here, but the memory of the dream–and her lies–were so fresh in my mind that I was deeply and painfully confused.  My only thought was to escape, up the mountain and out of Hidden Springs.


“I’m glad I caught you before you were gone,” Rebecca said quietly…timidly.  “I would have been here sooner, but Horse wouldn’t let me ride her.”

Good, I thought.  At least it’s not just me.

“Why did you come looking for me?” I couldn’t help but ask, though my voice was bitter.

“Fisher…” She tried to look me in the eye, but I refused to meet her gaze, and she sighed.  “I know you don’t believe this, but I care about you.  It has nothing to do with Hidden Springs, or my connection to this place.  It has everything to do with how a woman feels for a man she loves.”


I snorted.  “And I’m just supposed to believe you?  After the way you lied about everything else?”


Her simple reply stopped me in my tracks, and despite myself, I met her eyes.  “No?”

“No.  I don’t expect you to believe me.  I realize I made a horrible mistake, and that trust, once broken, is damn near impossible to put back together again.  I didn’t come here to try and convince you to stay.”

“Then why?” 


She smiled a sad, sweet smile.  “I came to tell you which way to go.  I know where your sister is.”


Some of you might know that I got a job recently.  This week was my first week on the job, and I can tell it’s going to take me a while to adjust to not being at home all the time.  I’ve been pretty tired by the time I do get home.

For this reason, my updating schedule has been thrown out of whack, and I’m not sure how long it will take me to get back on track again.  I do not plan to quit playing or writing any of my projects, but bear with me and have patience as I’m not sure how often I’ll be able to update.

Thank you all so much for your comments and support!  They really mean a lot to me!

1.5: Secrets


Two months had passed in a blink, and the wedding was just a short three days away.  Rebecca and I had become very close over the past weeks.  She spent most days at the cottage with me, leaving only when we were ready to retire for the night.  I would have thought the fact that we had become friends (or something perhaps a bit more than friends) would have lessened my anxiety about getting married.


Instead, I found myself growing increasingly more uncomfortable as the ceremony date approached.  Marriage was a lifelong commitment.  ‘Til death do us part.  Especially this marriage.  Without it, I’d be forced to leave a place that was quickly becoming home to me.  I felt like I was trading my soul in order to be allowed to stay in Hidden Springs.

These feelings would get worse in the time I spent away from Rebecca.  When she was with me, though, they would diminish.  In her company, I could forget about the reasons behind the wedding, and just enjoy being with her.

That afternoon three days before the wedding, however, found someone else waiting on my doorstep when I returned from my morning fishing run.


“Ambrose,” I shook his hand.  “What a surprise.  Would you like to come in?”

I was puzzled at Samantha’s husband’s presence.  Ambrose had never said more than a few words to me when I had visited their household previously.

“No, thanks,” he responded.  “I won’t bother you long.”

“What can I do for you?”

“Actually, Fisher, I’d like to do something for you.  I want to take you out tonight for drinks.  Celebrate, and all.”


I stared at him blankly for a moment.  “Oh, you mean…like a bachelor’s night?”

“Yes, exactly.  I mean, if you want.”  He looked away and rubbed the back of his neck awkwardly.  I was pretty sure Samantha had put him up to this, but it was a nice gesture, all the same.

“Sure.  All right.  Just…no strippers, okay?”  I chuckled, but he looked at me in confusion, and his cheeks even got a little red. 


“We don’t–I mean, uh…there are no strippers in Hidden Springs.” 

I sighed.  This guy had no sense of humor, it seemed.  I let him know I had just been joking around, and he let out his breath in relief before laughing politely.  We made plans to meet up around eight, and he walked back down the hill toward his house.


A few hours later found Ambrose and I at a small bar called Disco-Tech–obviously it had retained its name from back before the world went to hell.  The place was surreal.  It was decorated in a crazy retro style, with refracted mirror-balls and garish colors.  It even had real electric lights run by a solar generator, but they used the power sparingly.  Any kind of electricity was rare, nowadays.


We each nursed a beer, home brewed by the bar’s owner, Lars.  It was very strong, and surprisingly flavorful.  I found myself chatting and laughing with Ambrose in no time flat.  Even more shocking was the fact that he laughed with me.

“This’s some goood shtuff,” I slurred.  I couldn’t remember how long it had been since I’d had alcohol, but it was making me feel warm from the inside out.  The warmth reminded me of the feeling I got every time I looked at Rebecca.  How could I ever have been anxious about marrying her?   She was sweet and thoughtful and incredibly gorgeous.

I thought about her long, slender legs, her soft skin with its light green hue that made me want to caress it…  “God, she’s so beautiful, Ambrose,” I said out loud.


“I hope you mean Rebecca,” he laughed, but I could tell he was only half joking.

“Yes, you idiot!  Who else would I mean?”

“Good.   So you’re not…nervous?”

“Naaaw, not really.  Y’know, she’s pretty amazing.  I mean, she works hard, she never complains, she’s kind to me and the animals, she has a mean talent for gardening…and that great body–What do I have to be nervous about?”   

My words were light-hearted, but Ambrose wasn’t smiling.  He twisted his glass in a counter-clockwise motion and looked at me thoughtfully.  He just stared, for so long that I began to fidget uncomfortably.

“There are things you don’t know about her,” Ambrose finally said, so quietly I could barely hear over the chatter of the bar’s other patrons. 


Well, that was obvious.  We hadn’t known each other long.  But Ambrose made it sound like the things I didn’t know weren’t things I’d be happy about.  “Like what?” I asked, just as quietly.

“It’s not for me to tell.  But you should ask her.  You deserve to know everything before you promise yourself to her.  This might get me into trouble with Samantha, but…you deserve to know.  It’s what’s right.”


I kicked at rocks as I walked slowly home from Disco-Tech, hands in my pockets and head thick with doubt.  What was Rebecca hiding, and why?  She’d always seemed genuine.  I guess I wasn’t the greatest judge of character.


The more I thought about it, the more angry I became.  How dare she hide important facts about herself!?  If I’m going to marry someone, Ambrose was right–I deserved to know any and all important facts!  Entering a marriage with lies was no way to start a life-long commitment. 

Well, not that Ambrose had said she’d ever lied.  Just that she hadn’t told me everything.  Which amounted to about the same thing.  I’d been extremely open with her, contrary to my usual reservations with people.  I’d told her about my grandmother; how I’d lost my sister and grandfather; even about Karsh and the real reason behind the attack.  She’d been shocked at that, not that I blame her.  That was a lot to take in.

But she’d surprised me with her acceptance of that and everything else about me.  She didn’t treat me any differently after she learned that my step-father had been instrumental in the destruction of life as we knew it.  Probably because she has skeletons in her own closet, I muttered to myself.


I wondered what she could be keeping from me that was so horrible.  I stopped walking abruptly as a thought entered my mind.  Oh God, could she be pregnant?  You’d think, if that were the case, she’d have wanted to marry me as soon as possible–so she could claim that the child was mine.  And yet, she seemed in no great hurry.  She was still the same size she was when I met her two months back, and I’d never seen her get sick suddenly.

If that’s not it, what else could it be?  My head came up with several crazy ideas and dismissed them just as quickly.

I was conflicted.  Ambrose’s revelation had increased my doubts about the wedding a hundredfold.  Part of me wanted to pack a few things and get the hell out of Dodge.  Sure, Hidden Springs was wonderful.  Okay, it was more than wonderful.  But what kind of price would I be paying in order to stay?  I had thought I’d known, but now I wasn’t so sure.

Instead of heading home to pack, though, I found my feet guiding me to Rebecca’s.  Damn it, she owed me an explanation, and I was determined to get one.  I was at her door and knocking–probably a damn sight firmer than I strictly needed to–before I could even think of what I was going to say.


It was Samantha who answered the door, looking confused.  “Fisher?  It’s late…is everything okay?”

Crap, it was late.  I hadn’t even thought about how many hours had passed since Ambrose and I got to the bar.  “I…no, everything’s not okay.  Is Rebecca still awake?”  I caught sight of Ambrose peeking from his and Samantha’s bedroom.  A wince crossed his face when he saw it was me, and he ducked back into the room before Samantha saw him.

As for Samantha, she waved her hand in front of her nose in disgust as soon as I spoke.  “Are you drunk?”


“No!” I denied it.  “I just…I really need to talk to her.  Please.”  Samantha must have seen the desperation in my eyes, because after a moment, she sighed and opened the door fully. 

“She’s reading in her room.”

I breezed inside and hurried to Rebecca’s door before Samantha could change her mind.  It was ajar, so I pushed it open a bit, then stopped short.


Rebecca was obviously in her nightclothes, which amounted to nothing more than an oversized shirt and some panties.  Her beautiful legs were laid bare in all their glory, and her hair hung loose and messy around her shoulders.  I found it very hard to breathe for several moments, and I nearly forgot the reason I’d come in the first place.

She must have been very engrossed in the book, because she didn’t seem to notice I was there.  Quit standing around like a creeper and say something, I told myself.  I cleared my throat and tapped lightly on her open door to announce my presence.

“Fisher?”  Rebecca looked surprised to see me, and hurriedly pulled her night shirt down as far as it would go over her hips.  Her perfectly-formed, gorgeous hips…Focus, Fisher!

“Can I come in?” I asked hoarsely.

“Of course.”


I closed the door behind me and stood awkwardly just inside, not knowing how to begin.  How do you accuse the woman you’re supposed to marry of hiding something from you?  Especially when she was barely clothed!  Rebecca rose from the bed after a few seconds, but kept her distance.

“Fisher, what’s wrong?”


When I didn’t answer right away, she stepped closer.  She reached out to hold my hand, but I flinched and pulled away at her touch, as if it burned.  Her eyes shone with confusion, and definitely a little hurt.

“What’s going on?” She asked again.

“I could ask you the same thing,” I almost yelled in frustration. 

“What are you–“ Rebecca began, but then she caught a whiff of my breath.  “Are you drunk?”

NO!  Why does everyone keep asking me that?  I only had a few beers with Ambrose.  This isn’t about me.  It’s about you.”

“What about me?” 

“There’s something you’re keeping from me.  Something important.  Tell me, Rebecca!”  Now I was shouting, and the hurt in Rebecca’s eyes had evolved into…fear?


“I can’t,” she whispered.  “Please, it could ruin everything!”

I had been expecting denial, and maybe anger that I was confronting her.  Rebecca’s fear deflated my own anger, and I suddenly felt extremely tired.  “I need to know.  Before I marry you, Rebecca.  I need to.”  The heat had left my voice, and I didn’t even care that I was practically pleading for an answer.

It must have taken her only a moment to make up her mind, but that moment seemed to stretch into eternity.  Finally, she sighed in resignation.  “All right, Fisher.  I’ll tell you my secret.”


A/N:  Ambrose is played by a sim called Victor Key, by mission-simpossible on tumblr.