TS4- Heart & Soul 2.8: Questions Withheld

Gen 2 Chapter 8 

You would think that with Tate, Faithe, Addison and Alek all moved out, married, and starting lives of their own that life in the Marx household would be quieter.  You’d be wrong.

Devan cries constantly.

Tad and Isadora are either playing loud or arguing even louder.

Avery practicing music for her entertainer job is a good sound even if the lack of attention bothers Devan.

And then there are just the other various noises associated with having a huge extended family that likes to visit.

Amira finally retired after Avery decided to follow in her musical shoes so to speak and finds peace where she can living in a bustling household.

Not that she’s completely retired.  Of course, there’s still the Mostly Ghostly Detective Agency.

“I’m telling you Amira,” Bastian repeated patiently, “she’s not ready for this.”

“Bastian, I’ve had a long long life.  I’ve lived and died, haunted, and lived again,” Amira sighed wearily.  “I just want to enjoy my last years with my family.”

“Then talk to her,” Bastian urged.

“I will.  Today,” she responded.

As Amira was just about to try talking to her, Avery cut in.  “He never stops crying!” she complained.  “Isadora and Tad were nothing like this!  Maybe Tate, Faithe, and Addison had the right idea not having kids,” she laughed.  But her laugh sounded a bit hysterical and Amira decided the talk could wait a little longer.

“Go relax for a while hun,” Gabe smiled, kissing Avery on the cheek.

“Rand and I did a school project together with daddy,” Nix bragged to Isadora.  “It was a robot and it was so cool!”  My mommy was bragging about it to grandpa.  After that, Isadora tore out of the room.

“Mommy!  Mommy!  I did all my homework, did the dishes, made my bed, and even cleaned up my toys!  I’ve been soooo good…”  Avery cut her off before she could finish, “in a little while sweetie, please.”

The desperation in her mom’s voice quieted the girl’s pleading and she decided to find someone else do help her with a school project instead.

“They’re always with the baby!”  Tad whined.

“He’s just fussy, Tad.”  Isadora coaxed.  “C’mon let’s ask grandma if she’ll help with a school project instead.”

“Thanks, grandma!  This volcano is going to be awesome.  I can’t wait to show the Holt kids!”  Isadora enthused while Tad continued to pout despite agreeing to participate.

“Finally, a few minutes peace,” Avery sighed on a long exhale.

“Ma ma potty!”

So much for some alone time.  That’s not nice though, he works hard all day.  But what about me?  

“Babe, go to bed,” Avery sighed before she said something she’d regret.

“The Freezer Bunny jumped over the moon…”

Great, now I can’t sleep!

Sebastian decided to try to talk to Avery himself but was stopped short when he saw her crying in the kitchen.

“Talk to me girl.  What’s going on?” Bastian asked softly.

“Just can’t sleep,” she sighed.

“And why not?” he returned.

“Nothing… everything… I don’t know?”  Looking down she continued in a whisper, “How is it possible to feel lonely surrounded by people?”

Bastian frowned, this seemed more serious than he’d expected.

“I don’t know girl, but we’ll figure it out.  Now off to bed,” he encouraged.

After filling Amira in on what Avery said, Bastian continued, “maybe it is time you and she had that talk after all.  It might be just what she needs.”

Chapter 2.9 coming soon!

Chapter notes:

Yes, that’s right!  After a year long absence, the Marx and Holt families are back to continue the Heart & Soul legacy!  A lot has happened in the last year.  One thing, in particular, is the emergence of toddlers.  Which led to things being a bit tricky starting this chapter as Tad was still a baby and Avery was about to give birth to Devan.  In the last Holt chapter, I’d stated that Tad should have been aged to child already.  I also didn’t have a bedroom set up for the boys.  It was still set up for Addison and Alek.  So there was quite a bit of set up that had to be done before I could even start screenshotting the chapter!  As much as I’ve whined about pre-writing chapters for the last year once it came time to snuggle up on the couch with my notebook and let my imagination fly I realized with a surprise that I was really enjoying myself!  Although trying to fit the screenshotting into 2 1/2 days was frustrating (no clue why it was Monday and not Sunday when I started) I had fun messing with their emotions and stuff.  So, they’re back and I hope you’re as thrilled as I am!

If you’re new to my blog and have no clue who these families are:  It all started with ‘Till Death Do We Part an Ambrosia Challenge story which continued with this current story The Heart & Soul Legacy.  I decided to do a recap for those of you who aren’t familiar with the stories.  Heart & Soul: Beginnings

TS4- Heart & Soul: Beginnings

It’s been a little over a year since I’ve written any chapters for the Heart & Soul Legacy and as I was finishing off my first chapter after starting back up with the Marx and Holt families it occurred to me that very few of my current readers have likely ever heard of them. ‘Til Death Do We Part an Ambrosia Challenge was 30 chapters and Heart & Soul the spinoff story is also a little over 30 chapters. Now, I won’t lie.  I would love if everyone took the time to read those stories.  I consider them my best work.  But I know that would be way too much to ask.  So I decided to do a recap.  Even if you’re familiar with the Marx and Holt families already it might be fun to revisit their antics! Hope you enjoy the story…

In order to move forward, we have to go back.  Way back.  Back in September 2014 when Sims 4 was released.  Pinstar posted the legacy challenge rules on his website The Sims Legacy Challenge and Nyssa Marx (from my Sims 3 legacy) made a return to start the legacy once again.  I did a scored legacy and raced to the finish.  You can read it if you want, Marx Legacy.  I’ll warn you, though, I’d just started blogging and the whole 10 generation legacy was a whopping 34 chapters that read like building instructions!

Two years later… CitizenErased14, author of the Dust 2 Dust story made a challenge based on that story called The Ambrosia Challenge.  She put out a call in the writer’s lounge on the forums for beta testers and I eagerly accepted the challenge.  I decided to delve back into my Marx Legacy save which had stopped at generation 10 to continue the legacy until I have the 13th generation heir, Amira Marx.  Thirteen being a superstitious number and all some sims thought that Amira’s illness was a curse.

Whether it was a curse or not Amira’s mystery illness cost the family their millions and their legacy home.  Then, it cost her life.  Her parents moved away never to be heard from again.

But Amira stayed.

That’s where the Holt’s come into the picture.  After decades sitting empty due to stories of the house being haunted, Dante Holt purchased it for practically nothing.  Amira was not pleased to be sharing her space with someone.  Especially someone who couldn’t see her.

Dante fell in love with Leigh and when he discovered that she was pregnant with his baby they had a quickie wedding.

That’s where Edric and Elijah came into the story.

Amira discovered that unlike the rest of the family little Edric could see her!  Edric spent most of his nights hanging out with Amira while his family slept and most of his days napping.

Edric, being an analytical mind, decided that there must be a reason that Amira had been turned into a ghost.  So he went to the home of the oldest sim in the neighborhood Cali and asked her roundabout questions regarding death and ghosts hoping she might know.  While Cali was cooking dinner Edric fell asleep on and when he awoke she was dead and the Grim Reaper was there to reap her soul!

Edric begged Grim to give Cali more time and his wish was granted.  But that got Edric thinking… if Cali could be returned to life could Amira too?  He asked Grim and he replied that yes it is possible but no one had ever actually accomplished the task.  He would need to grow a death flower, the hermit in Granite Falls could tell him how.  He would need to find a rare angelfish and milk the essence of life from a cowplant.  He would then need to combine these ingredients into the food of the gods… ambrosia.  After telling Edric this he laughed and said no sim could accomplish such tasks in one lifetime.  When Edric asked where he could get an angelfish and cowplant Grim dissipated into a cloud of smoke.

When Edric was a teen, he finally had the opportunity to meet the oddly dressed hermit in Granite Falls and ask him for a death flower.  The hermit laughs and says it’s not that easy!  He explains to Edric how to grow a death flower himself but warns that he’ll need to be a highly-skilled gardener in order to succeed.

Over the years, Edric had many pursuits in addition to his ever-growing garden.  He was quite the genius and built his own rocket ship and was later in the astronaut career.

And as he became older he grew to like his friend Lia a little more than his other friends and they got married soon after high school.

And then Rose was born… but due to a little mistake I made in the challenge tasks, I decided not to make her the heir.

Edric was so focused on all of his many pursuits that he let his health decline.

After a nice long vacation to relax and recuperate the family welcomed the heir Tristan…. well, not everyone welcomed him obviously.

With his focus on his family, Edric spent less and less time with Amira and she spent several years hiding.  When she finally emerged she went to check on the death flower only to discover a young boy.  At first, she thought it was Edric but it was his son Tristian.

Tristian and his older sister Rose never got along and he started to spend more and more time seeking solace fishing in a nearby pond.

After many years of suffering through his childhood with Rose, Tristian meets Skyla and falls in love.

Kristof Holt is born.  This is one of my all-time favorite pictures.  Edric was probably my favorite sim ever.  So you can understand how upsetting what happened next was.

Edric brought Tristan out to the garden and explained his plan to him.  There were 3 ingredients to the ambrosia and they were missing the essence of life.  His life was coming to an end and he loved Amira and his family very much.  He wanted to see her happy but he didn’t want anyone else in his family to have to sacrifice themselves for the essence.  Yes, you got that right.  I had to kill one of my favorite sims ever!  I cried and cried!

Tristan and Amira were both devastated but life had to go on.

Soon, Kristof became Amira’s friend just as his father and grandfather had been.

And then Kristof learned that he was going to be a big brother and was very excited!

Unlike Rose, Kristof was thrilled to be a big brother to Vaughn.

Vaughn knew something fishy was going on.  He noticed that his dad and brother would talk a lot in low voices.  Especially when Kristof was cooking.  But when he would ask what they were talking about his dad would give him some lame story like they were talking about recipes.  Why would they whisper about recipes?  Amira suggested they distract Vaughn so they took him camping and soon they thought he’d forgotten.

Tristan discovered a box of photos from Amira’s family that his father had hidden under the bed.  She was very excited.

Tristian and Kristof urged Amira to write a diary about her life… and death as it were.  This diary is now passed from Holt heir to Holt heir to learn the story of how their family helped bring Amira back to life and how they are connected to the Marx family by more than blood… I’ll get to the blood part soon.

After overhearing his father and brother whispering again about recipes and pointing to the fishbowl Vaughn went to investigate. Only to discover the angelfish that had been there as long as he could remember was gone!  Something was going on for sure.

What was going on?  The cooking of ambrosia of course!  Finally, after 4 generations the recipe was completed and Amira would be returned to life!

But her joy was short-lived.  She turned when she heard a gravelly voice speaking behind her.  It was the grim reaper!  What he said gave her the chills and made her realize that this may have been a terrible mistake.

He said: This gift you have been given will soon become your curse.  Enjoy it while you can.  Then he laughed and dissipated into a cloud of black smoke.

Kristof married Michaela his high school girlfriend.

And at the wedding, his brother Vaughn met Amira.  Despite her trying to thwart his pursuits they fell in love.

Before long they had their own wedding.  Which is where the Heart & Soul Legacy begins!  There are two families that I switch back and forth between.  The Holts and Marx families.

I think that this post is getting way too long so I decided to try to keep things as short as I can.  Kristof and Michaela had five kids. First, Isaac who was a big favorite of readers.  Then the triplets Keegan, Kyler, and Keeley.  Later there was a surprise risky woohoo baby Jasper.

Amira finally discovered what Grim was talking about when he talked about her curse.  Not only can she see and talk to ghosts but her daughters can as well!  After wondering most of his life what the big secret was her husband Vaughn finally learns about his wife’s life as a ghost.

Sadly, I never did a family photo with the Marx kids.  I think this is the only pic of them all together.  First, there was Tate.  Then, Faithe.  But Amira needed at least 3 (I think?) for her aspiration so they tried again.  And got… another set of triplets!  Yes, I had triplets in both households this generation.  They were Avery, Addison and Alek.  And yes, I had many complaints about the similar names being so hard to keep up with.

Amira’s ghost friend Bastian approached her with another ghost and that’s how she met Detective Culpepper.  She contacted him to help solve the ghost’s case so she could have peace.

Bastian’s great-great-grandson Gabe shows up at the house and becomes a permanent fixture with the family.

Amira and Bastian start the Mostly Ghostly detective agency.

Isaac Holt marries Misty, moves out of the house and has a baby Liza.

After their long childhood friendship, Amira’s daughter Avery Marx and Bastian’s great-great-grandson Gabe Crouse start dating as teens.

Avery and Gabe decided that they didn’t want to wait until after high school to start a family.

After years of pursuing his older sister Faithe’s best friend Rowan, Alek finally catches her attention.  Later they get married have a son.

And so, generation 2 begins!  Keegan Holt marries Mariela after her saying no many many times.

In a huge wedding…

Avery Marx marries Gabe…

In another huge wedding.

After some major mood swings and unhappiness with his job and now that he’s in possession of her diary and knows the story Keegan wants to spend time with his aunt Amira and offers his hacking services to her.  He’s in the criminal career but nobody knows it.  They all think that he’s a software engineer.

Isadora Marx, Avery’s daughter is good friends with Sascha Holt, Keegan’s daughter.

In their last published chapter, we meet Keegan’s twins Nix and Rand.

 

Avery and Gabe had two more boys Tad and Devon but that chapter has no screenshots at all.  Keegan’s surprise brother had a surprise baby of his own, also a boy.  I had absolutely no idea that this was going to end up being this long when I started it!  It took hours to write and hopefully it won’t take too very long to read!  If you got this far… well done!  Thank you for reading.

TS4- Heart & Soul 2.7: Family is Everything

Chapter 2.7

There might not be much that Keegan and Mariela agreed on, sometimes he thought they argued just for the sake of arguing, but they both agreed after the insanity that was taking care of the twins as babies and toddlers that they were done with having kids.  He had no idea how his parents had done it with triplets, and having five kids! Craziness.

He knew parents weren’t supposed to pick favorites, and it might just be because she’s older and has had more time to show her personality, but Keegan would do anything for his little Sascha.

“Please, daddy can I have a new Voidcritter card?”

The twins were inseparable.  He had been close to Kyler growing up but that was nothing compared to Rand and Nïx. They insisted on sharing a room, she played chess with him even though she told Keegan she hates chess and Rand in turn, played on the monkey bars or at the playground around other kids when he’d rather be home.

They were a mix of personalities that was for sure.

Sascha had inherited her mother’s temper it seemed.

Luckily, listening to music for a bit usually calmed her down.  So Keegan bought her a radio for her room so that when she was sent there as punishment, she was usually fine by the time she was allowed to rejoin her siblings.

Keegan worried about Nïx.  She was so unlike her sister’s fiery personality.  He recognized the same sadness in her that he felt at times.  He vowed to keep an eye on it.

She did have her strange habits, though he was always shocked at some of the stuff that she found.

The first time he noticed her talking to herself Keegan laughed out loud.  He would have thought Nïx was Isaac’s kid.

In comparison, Isaac’s daughter Liza was a quiet cheerful girl.

Rand, well, he’s just Rand.  Too smart for his own good.  Anti-social except when it comes to his twin.

With a temper to match his mother’s if pushed into something he doesn’t want to do.

“There’s no way your Mytheme card can beat my Yorier card!” Sascha exclaimed.

“Mytheme can so beat Yorier, just wait ’till after dinner and you’ll see!” Nïx challenged.

Although Rand said nothing, everyone knew it would be his twin he cheered on when the battle began.

“Don’t you kids have something better to do other than battle those critters all of the time?”

“Sure!” Nïx exclaimed, “I made it 5 times across the monkey bars today without falling!”

“I beat dad at chess” Rand grinned.

“Umm no grandpa,” Sascha said rolling her eyes, “there’s nothing better than Voidcritters!”

“Sascha!” Keegan warned.

“Sorry grandpa,” she pouted then looked to her grandmother, “grandma, you won’t believe what I found in a log today!  Someone hid a Chompy Monsta toy in there!”

“Oh did they?  Funny, I only ever find frogs.  I’m two away from completing my collection!”

“Logs are boring, the trash is the bestest place to look for discarded toys!  That’s where I found my Mytheme card that I’m gonna beat Sascha with!” Nïx announced.

The conversation returned to Voidcritters until everyone was finished eating and the battle began.

No, Keegan didn’t want any more kids.  He loved these three so much he didn’t see the point in having more.  This family, his family, was the best anyone could ask for.

Chapter 2.8

Chapter notes:

Technically, since Tad Marx is older than the Holt twins, he should have been in the picture of all the kids at the arcade club.  But, I have some catching up to do in the Marx household and haven’t aged him up yet!  I didn’t realize until later that he should have been there.  Just imagine he’s off getting a pastry.  🙂

TS4- Heart & Soul Interlude: Voidcritters and Tentacle Monsters

Interlude

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Sascha Holt’s grandma is always looking in these logs so Sascha decides to try her luck and finds a limited edition foil Yorier Voidcritter card!

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She runs down the street to tell her bestie Isadora about the card.

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They rush back to Sascha’s house to do battle with it because Isadora doesn’t have a battlestation.  Sascha was so excited about the new card she forgot she has to train it up first and loses badly.

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After the game, Isadora leaves and Sascha sits in her favorite spot next to the speaker to listen to music while she does her homework.  She can hear the toddlers crying and her mommy talking to them upstairs.  She turns the music up louder.

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She swears that she saw tentacles coming out from under her bed!  Luckily her daddy shows up to comfort her.

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After spraying some smelly stuff under her bed he announces that it’s safe to sleep again.  She thinks he’s making the whole thing up.

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After school, she cloudgazes with him and they talk about the twins.  She wonders how long it will be until they can play with her and he says it won’t be long at all.

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Isadora loves her grandpa best.  He always takes time to help her with her homework.  Her mommy and daddy are always working or busy with her toddler brother Tad.

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She’s not happy when her mommy announces that there will be another baby soon.  But then she tells Isadora she bought her a Voidcritter battlestation, she is so excited she forgets to be sad about the new baby.

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After dinner, she runs up to her room to call Sascha and Liza about the battlestation.

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When they were on the phone, Sascha warned her about the tentacle creature that was under her bed and Isadora is sure that she saw something that night.  She ran to her grandparent’s room and woke them up.

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Her grandpa went upstairs to her room and sprayed under the bed like Sascha’s daddy did and Isadora gave him a big hug thank you.

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Even though she has her own battlestation now Isadora meets Liza at the club to play.  Liza is sort of related but she’s not sure how.  Her daddy is Isaac.

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While tucking her in that night grandpa sprays for her so she doesn’t have to worry about any tentacles coming out and grabbing her in her sleep!

Chapter 2.7

Chapter notes:

Although there are very few screenshots I actually played several days in each household.  A few were before the stuff pack came out and I was waiting for the new content to do anything with the girls.  

Mariela and Keegan had twins, a boy and a girl I named Rand and Nix.  The names are both characters from two of my favorite book series.  Avery and Gabe had a boy named Tad, aged up to young adult, he got a job as a secret agent and she followed in her mom’s footsteps with entertainer.  Jasper, Alek and Addison all moved out.  I married Alek to Rowan and Addison to Payton and unfortunately the game married Jasper to some random chick.  I decided that Alek would be the Marx spare to have a kid so Rowan is pregnant.

If you’re wondering why most of the screenshots only have Vaughn with Isadora, it’s against the rules for me to make Amira have any interactions with a possible heir.  All of her interactions must be autonomous so that I can’t cheat towards one or the other by giving them a better relationship.  Whichever has the best relationship when either she dies or they age to YA is the heiress.  Also, Avery and Gabe just got jobs and were either working or upping their skills for work.  I’m thinking of having Amira retire so she has more opportunities to spend time with the kids.

I did take several shots that didn’t fit in with the whole “time jump” that I’m saving for the outtakes chapter. Unfortunately, this won’t be the only time jump since the Marx family has one more baby.  

TS4- Heart & Soul 2.6: Judge and Jury

Chapter 2.6

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As Avery cuddled up with her husband she marveled at the twist of fate that had brought them together as children. Bastian, Gabe’s great-grandfather and ghostly protector, had left Gabe a note with the address of the Marx family home on it.  When Gabe sat and started talking to Avery that day they had a connection right away. That connection grew even closer after they aged to teens and started dating.

Both of them wanted children.  It seemed silly to wait.  Unfortunately, they were the only ones that seemed to think that.

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“I can’t wait to see this little one,” Gabe grinned.

“Do you think my Mom will start talking to me again before the baby is born?” she asked Gabe.

Gabe laughed, “I don’t know, Vaughn is giving me the silent treatment as well.”

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“At least we’ll be finished with school soon.  That will make things easier with the next pregnancy,” she mused, “we’ll be nineteen soon, surely they won’t be angry at us then.”

“Let’s hope not.  While it does make things easier financially living with your parents, I’m tired of being treated like a little kid,” Gabe muttered.

With that, Avery sighed and changed the subject, “Addison was passed out on the couch again this morning when I got up to check on Isadora.”

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“Maybe you should talk to her about it?” Gabe replied, looking concerned.

When Avery saw Addison sitting alone she decided to take Gabe’s advice.  She sat down next to her sister and tried to decide how to broach the subject when Addison cut her off.

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“I’m getting married!” she announced, shocked, Avery just stared at her, “so, this is how it happened,” Addison continued.

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“Payton took me out to uncle Kristof’s fancy restaurant.”

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“He requested a private table and I wondered why, then after we were done eating, he proposed!” she gushed, “isn’t that great?  We’re getting married and I’m moving in with him as soon as we graduate!”

Getting over her shock, and deciding that she didn’t want to ruin her sister’s excitement by discussing her drinking, Avery smiled back and said, “that’s great Addison, I’m so happy for you!”

Addison rattled on about the big fancy wedding that they were planning but Avery barely listened.  She didn’t understand why, but she felt jealous of her sister.  She and Gabe had planned to get married since they were children so there had been no need for a big proposal, still, it would have been nice.

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Uncomfortable with her train of thought, Avery excused herself to go check that her almost three-year-old daughter wasn’t into anything.

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Avery tried to concentrate on her homework but she couldn’t shake the guilt she had been feeling all day over the jealousy of her sister.  It didn’t help that the baby was kicking her insides like a sports star.  Has to be a boy.  She heard Gabe laughing in the other room with her cousin Keegan and frowned.  Gabe was her only friend and now that he was her husband it felt different.  She had her club but wasn’t really friends with any of the club members.  I need to make some friends, even one friend would be nice.  Gabe has Keegan, I have nobody.  

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Making an excuse that she needed to do some research for her final history exam, she made her way to the library. The park may have been a better place to meet people but the thought of going there made her feel so exposed. Avery looked around the library for a likely friend candidate.  How does one know that a person would make a good friend?  

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Feeling frustrated and a bit uncomfortable being a pregnant teen she sat down at a table and watched all of the people come and go.  This was the first time she’d really gone into public pregnant other than school and she didn’t like the feeling of being judged that she got.  I have nothing to be sorry for.  This was our decision.  

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Was everyone staring at her or was she just imagining it?  Slowly, she started to make her way home, regretting the idea of trying to find a friend.  She had Gabe and Isadora.  Soon, she’d have another baby to occupy her.  Friends could wait.

Interlude: Voidcritters and Tentacle Monsters

Chapter notes:

The pictures of Addison and Payton at the restaurant were taken while I was playing Kristof running the restaurant.  I liked them so much I wanted to find a way to fit them into the story.  It was tricky getting shots of them without showing the stars over their heads.

TS4- Heart & Soul 2.5: Deadlock

Chapter 2.5

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Keegan glared daggers at Mariela and she glared daggers right back at him.  She wasn’t going to let him push her into this.

“Mariela, be reasonable.  Sascha is almost two.  Gabe told me Avery’s pregnant again.  You knew I wanted at least three kids when you married me.  What is your problem?” he ended with a growl and looked like he was about to punch something.

“It’s my body, my choice Keegan,” she said simply, “we’ll have to pick up this argument when I get home.  I’m running late to meet the girls for lunch,” with that, she headed for the door.

Keegan snorted.  “Run off to meet your friends then.”

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That stopped her in her tracks.  She spun around to face him.  “Family, Keegan.  Your family I might add, get over it!”

Friends had always been a touchy subject between them since when he’d proposed the first… three times she had used her friends as an excuse to put him off.  Since she’d married and had Sascha she never heard from any of them anymore anyway.

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She sat down at the table with Keegan’s sister and sisters-in-law with a sigh of relief.  Glad to be away from a rambunctious toddler and the house for a bit.

Somehow the topic of children got brought up.  Instantly she felt on guard.  But no one asked her why she and Keegan hadn’t had another yet and she relaxed.

Keeley said, “I’m just too set in my ways for a baby.  They take too much effort.  I’d rather veg out in the mansion watching television or go fishing.”

Misty pouted, “I wouldn’t mind another child but our house is so small there really isn’t room and Isaac isn’t very enthusiastic about the prospect.  I think it will just be Liza for us.”

“If Kyler was around more it might happen,” added Fallon, “but he’s always on a book tour or working on another book.  It just wouldn’t be fair to a child to have an absent father.”

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They all looked at Mariela expectantly and she cleared her throat and shifted in her seat.  “We’re, discussing it,” she muttered and looked around for the waiter.  She needed another drink.

Thankfully the conversation shifted to less stressful topics and she relaxed once more.  They finished their lunch and made plans to meet again in a week.

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Instead of heading home Mariela found herself at her parent’s doorstep.  She had no idea why she was even there and thought about leaving when her mother hollered from inside to come in.

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Sitting down with her parents it all spilled out.  How Keegan wanted another baby.  How they kept arguing about it. How everyone else had valid reasons not to have a baby but she really couldn’t think of one and didn’t know why she was being stubborn about it.  To her surprise, her parents laughed.

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Just as she was starting to get angry her mother sighed, “simmer down girl, I know that look, there’s no need to lose your temper.”

It looked as if both her parents were fighting to keep a straight face but they had stopped laughing, “the thing is hun, if we told you to do something when you were growing up, you would dig your heels in,” her mother said.

With a nod her father added, “when you were little it was cute, you would ball your little fists up and stick out your little lip,” he laughed then added, “but as you got older it lost it’s cuteness.”

“You were a pain in the behind, you were,” her mother added, “things might have been different if you had brothers or sisters but since you grew up alone you became set in your ways.”

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Mariela rolled her eyes and sighed, “what does my childhood have to do with Keegan pressuring me into having more kids?” she asked.

“Everything,” they both said at once then looked at each other and laughed some more.

“If you think about it you’ll most likely find that you really want another baby just as badly as your man does hun,” her mother said in a soothing voice, “the problem is that he went to you asking for it instead of letting you make the decision first.”

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They talked for a bit longer and then she said her goodbyes.  Am I really that bad?

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When she got home and saw Keegan her stomach started doing flip flops.  She loved that man so much.  He had this dark and dangerous air about him but at the same time, he was kind and caring.  He had some crazy mood swings at times, which she did her best to act like she didn’t notice, but she loved him even more for all his flaws.

They locked eyes from across the room and it took her a moment before she could speak, “let’s do it,” she said with a nod.

The look of shock and then pleasure that passed over his face was worth getting over her uncertainty.  He’d won. This time.

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Chapter 2.6

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Chapter notes:

I was originally planning to write this chapter from Keegan’s perspective but I was totally stuck on the first conversation. I didn’t know where to go from there.  Then I thought it might be interesting to get into Mariela’s head a bit.

I know having several sims in a chapter confuses everyone but I thought that the lunch was the perfect opportunity to explain why none of the Holt spares will have any more kids and the part with her parents gave some background on Mariela.

TS4- Heart & Soul 2.4: Double Standards

Chapter 2.4

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After two years together Alek still couldn’t believe that Rowan was his. They’d even started talking about getting married after high school.

At the clearing of his mother’s throat he pulled away with a sigh. The double standards in this house are ridiculous.

Looking embarrassed Rowan glanced back to where his mom had been standing.

“First, they let Avery marry Gabe and even share a bedroom.  Then, when you all moved back into this house they let Faithe stay with Gabe and Stanley’s family.  But now, they won’t even let us kiss?” she said as she got up.

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“We still on for tonight?” he asked, instead of responding.  He already knew the injustice of it all without her pointing it out.

“Yep. I’ll meet you at the little park between our houses. Say 12am?” she gave him one of her gorgeous smiles and then she was out the door.

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Addison came in and he reminded her, “it’s my night, don’t forget you’re covering for me sis.”

She rolled her eyes, “yea, yea, I got it covered. It’s actually worked out that they made us share a bedroom again,” with a laugh she was gone to do whatever it was she did when she wasn’t partying with her rich boyfriend Payton.

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He sat down at the table next to Avery and studied her when she wasn’t looking. He’d heard her throwing up the last few mornings before school.

Could they be that stupid?

“So sis, Isadora’s over a year old now and graduation’s coming up. Any big plans?” he hedged.

Did her face just get paler?

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“Big plans? Not sure what you mean. Like jobs?” then she glanced sideways before looking down at her lap.

Shit. They’d done it again! If history was repeating itself then they’d done it on purpose too.

He’d never be so naive. When he and Rowan had started getting physical he’d made sure to always use protection. Every time.

“How long?” he asked into the silence.

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With a sigh she stood up and started out of the room. He didn’t think she’d respond then she muttered, “I’m not sure,” as she left.

Gabe walked in as she walked out. His eyes went from her face to Alek’s.

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“What happened?” he asked.

Alek narrowed his eyes at his brother-in-law, “I can’t believe you did it again,” he growled as he followed Avery’s example and left the room.

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Chapter 2.5

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Chapter notes:

This chapter is a bit on the short side but I didn’t want to add anything more to it.  I think in the short span of time it covered a lot of information.  

Once again, I’m really struggling with the non-existent toddlers.  I just don’t want the kids to be really far apart in age this generation.  Part of me also just wants to get it over with so that I don’t have to worry about any more of these mini-time jumps.

TS4- Heart & Soul 2.3: Rollercoaster

Chapter 2.3

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Keegan dropped to the floor inside the door to the house, his heart racing. What the hell is wrong with me?

Tonight, on his way home from work, he was driving over the bridge when he had the sudden urge to jerk the wheel dropping the vehicle and himself into the water below. Before he knew it he started to do just that when a face popped in his mind and he quickly corrected himself. He couldn’t even remember the rest of the drive home.

That face was his infant daughter Sascha’s.

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As he looked down at his sweet little girl his heart rate slowed but the disbelief was still there. Shortly after graduating high school he started having these mood swings. But he’d never felt suicidal before. He didn’t think he was now. It was just some strange urge he’d had. He didn’t understand where these feelings were coming from. He had everything he’d ever wanted in life, he should be thrilled. When things weren’t going well with Mariela he thought that was what was causing it but now when he should be happy he wasn’t.  Some days he was happy and it made him doubt that there even was a problem, but other days like today he wasn’t.

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Sitting on the bed next to his wife he listened to her breathing and hoped that he would wake in a better mood. Tomorrow was the opening of his dad’s new restaurant and he didn’t want to bring everybody down at the party.

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Isaac, Misty, Kyler, Fallon, Keeley and Dae all met him and Mariela for the big grand opening of his dad’s new restaurant: Kristof’s.

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It was nice to see everyone.  A lot of the extended family showed up as well and came to the table to enthuse about the experimental foods.

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Kyler announced that he and Fallon would be getting married soon and everyone celebrated even more.

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Keegan excused himself to use the restroom and found himself on the couch in the kitchen that his dad took naps on.  He could barely remember anything everyone had talked about.  It was all a blur.  With a sigh, he got up to tell them that he wasn’t feeling well and headed home alone.

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Keegan was just finishing reading his aunt Amira’s diary when he heard voices downstairs.  Must be finished with the big grand opening.  He’d sent his mother to the restaurant when he got home taking over baby duty.  He locked the diary into the wall safe and got ready for bed. His dad passed the diary down to him the night of his wedding. He found the whole story surreal and amazing. Knowing what his family had done for Amira made him feel closer to her, his uncle and cousins.

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As Keegan approached his aunt Amira’s detective agency Mostly Ghostly he laughed to himself at the pun. He had always wondered why she had named it that. Now he knew. With a deep breath for courage, he opened the door.

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“Hey Keegan, what brings you out here today?” Amira asked with a smile.

Keegan cleared his throat and began, “you know I’m good with computers, right?  Well, I was just thinking if you ever needed help… hacking or searching for someone or something like that, I could help.”

He stared at the floor wishing it would swallow him up.  Why did I think this was a good idea?

At first, his aunt looked a bit confused then she seemed to realize what he was offering. The smile returned to her face and she nodded. “That sounds great Keegan, as a matter of fact I have a case that you might be perfect for. I’m trying to find this sim named Brittany Warner for their dead uncle but she seems to have moved and I can’t find her anywhere.  I don’t have a computer here but if you want we can use the one at the house.”

He let out the breath he didn’t realize he’d been holding. Then he smiled back at her and followed her to her house.

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He took a seat at the computer to start hacking the driver’s database for the last known address of Brittany Warner. It was a simple bit of hacking and he found her in no time at all.  Amira was impressed and Keegan felt like for once he was doing something good.

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Still riding the high he always got when he’d successfully hacked a database he found Mariela and reminded her why she’d married him.

Chapter 2.4

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Chapter notes:

Before everyone starts screaming about how Keegan needs to get help let me explain why he doesn’t: First, it took him years to convince his wife to marry him and have a baby, he’s afraid if he says anything he’ll lose that.  Second, Mariela has a terrible temper and he’s afraid of her response.  Third, most people that have problems like this don’t seek help. Especially when the next day they feel fine.

Originally this chapter was supposed to contain many more screenshots of the restaurant opening but alas it was just not meant to be.  Dining Out and I just do not get along!

Poses: Sad Poses by Choudu Sims and Sit and Chat Poses by Princess Paranoia (thanks Marialein) the in bed pose is actually a new mod I’m trying out.  If anyone’s interested I’ll look for the name.

Kristof’s restaurant is Modern Elegant Restaurant by KaruDesigns.  I added the table for 8.

TS4- Heart & Soul 2.2: Family and Friends

Chapter 2.2

TS4_x64 2016-06-13 10-15-44-51

“Oh it’s just you Bastian,” Avery yawned as she entered the nursery, “I thought she was fussing again.” She slumped tiredly into the chair next to the crib.

“You should try to get some more sleep. You have school in a few hours young lady,” Bastian scolded.

Bastian, Gabe’s great-grandfather, had stuck around to watch over his family after his death instead of moving on. Now he was her mom’s self-proclaimed partner in her private investigation business Mostly Ghostly.

Avery vaguely remembered meeting him at the park with her sisters when she was a little girl. It had still been a shock when her family was living with Gabe’s family while the new house was being built and she saw him again. If her sisters still saw him they did a great job of pretending he wasn’t there.

The stern look on his face brought her out of her musings and with a shake of her head she stood up and headed for the door.

“I’m awake now and I won’t be able to fall back to sleep.  I have some extra credit work I can do,” she huffed as she gave Isadora one last look before leaving the room.

After Avery left Bastian turned his attention back to his great-great-granddaughter. Her parents were impulsive teenagers. But he thought they were doing a wonderful job juggling an infant, high school and in Gabe’s case a part time job.

The door opened and he turned expecting to see Avery again fussing over her daughter. This time it was the other worry wart. Amira gave Isadora an anxious glance before her gaze landed on him.

“Don’t you have another house to haunt?” she laughed.

Although he was tethered to the house where his grave stood Bastian had learned he could move around if he put his mind to it. Lately his mind was focused on that baby.

At the sound of her voice Isadora opened her eyes and searched out her grandmother’s face.

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“In some ways I don’t feel old enough to be a granny but in others I feel so old,” she sighed as she picked up Isadora.

Bastian shrugged. “It all worked out for the best, and you can’t tell me you’d give up that rugrat.”

Amira shook her head and sighed, “before I died all I could think of was the legacy that I would be continuing. I was engaged young. He was a nice boy I suppose but I had chosen him for all the wrong reasons. I just worry that Avery is making the same mistakes that I almost made all those years ago.”

Bastian began to respond but Amira hushed him. She’d heard heavy footfalls in the hallway and knew who it was before Gabe came in.

“Is it feeding time?” he asked as he rubbed the sleep from his eyes.

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Amira didn’t bother telling him she could handle the baby. Her new son-in-law was stubborn on his best day. He would insist on caring for his daughter himself even if he was ready to pass out from exhaustion. She silently handed him the baby and with a nod at Bastian left him to it.

Bastian proudly watched his great-grandson care for his daughter. Who knew when he’d left him that note all those years ago with Amira’s address that this was how things would turn out?

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Gabe sat down at the table with his books feeling the usual relief that came when they arrived home from school every day. Being married with a kid in high school seemed to have put a spot light on him and Avery that they would rather not have. They just wanted to be left alone. He had wanted to drop out but all the parents were a united front against that idea.

He cracked open the textbook and stared down at the equations, waiting. He didn’t have to wait long. Like clockwork the door opened. He hid his grin and wondered to himself what the excuse would be today?

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“Is Isadora teething? Because I think Sascha might be.”

Ah. It was teething today. Doing his best to keep a straight face Gabe looked up at Keegan, “she has some teeth so I guess so,” he replied.

Keegan nodded and focused on the textbook on the table.

“So what is it today?” he asked sounding hopeful.

“Trig,” Gabe grunted looking down at the page again to hide his smile.

“Oh yea? Trig can be tricky. I could help,” Keegan said as he moved closer looking like an eager puppy dog.

“Sure Keegan. Thanks,” Gabe muttered. As they were finishing up he looked over at the older man. There were 9 years between them but having pregnant wives and having babies born only days apart had bonded them in a way time couldn’t touch. He was grateful for Keegan’s friendship.

“So Keegan why aren’t you home worrying over your own wife and daughter instead of here with me?” Gabe laughed.

Keegan laughed too, “they’re fine, Mariela said I hover too much. She told me to go find something to do.”

“What about work?” Gabe asked.

The moment the words came out of his mouth he wished he could take them back. He didn’t understand why being a software developer put his friend in such moods. The clouding over of Keegan’s face told the tale better than anything else.

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“My job,” Keegan cleared his throat and looked sadly out the window as he continued, “it’s not challenging.”

Looking uncomfortable Keegan started to head for the door. Shit.  I really screwed up this time.

Thinking quickly he threw his wife under the bus, “hey Keegan before you leave I think Avery might need some help with her Calc. homework.”

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Amazed at how quickly the expression on Keegan’s face changed, Gabe called Avery into the room and told her Keegan would help with her homework. She gave him a confused look but didn’t question him.

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Just then there was a knock at the door and his dad’s head peeked in, “we still watching the game with Vaughn?” Gabe nodded. He didn’t bother asking Keegan if he was going to watch. That man didn’t know a thing about sports.

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It had taken some convincing to get Amira and Vaughn to put the main living room outside when they were planning the new house but it was worth it to Gabe. Watching sports and being in the great outdoors surrounded by friends and family was perfect.

Chapter 2.3

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Chapter notes:

I’ve been working on this chapter for about two weeks now.  It’s my first real try at dialogue.  I want to thank CitizenErased14, Marialein, CathyTea, Pollyanna2 and lisabee2 for all their help as I wrote and re-wrote this.  I’ve actually changed a few parts since the last time I had someone look it over.  Screenshotting was a bit frustrating, especially when for some reason Gabe couldn’t hold the baby to feed her.  I ended up having to move her to the middle of the room.  

Since there’s so much text describing different things I didn’t put as many pictures into this chapter as I usually do. I’d love to know if it’s not enough or seems okay?

The Marx’s new legacy house was built especially for them by the wonderful builder Equuest!  Check out their builds on the Sim Creates blog.

TS4- Dining Out with Kristof Part 2

Part 2

I’ve come to the conclusion after running Kristof’s restaurant and a few in my rotation and taking sims to eat out in various saves that this gamepack is just not meant for gamers like myself that want to write a story instead of play it on YouTube.  I’ve been endlessly frustrated and disappointed so far with Dining Out.

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One thing I love about the gamepack is seeing family and friends of my sims when I’m running the restaurant.  I don’t like how the game keeps generating more townies just to eat at the restaurant though.  This is such a nice picture I wish I could use it but of course the silly stars are there.

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Payton Demarco and his mother show up and Kristof goes to welcome them.

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He checks up on Isaac and Misty and they give him 5 stars!

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After Payton and his mother have finished eating his father shows up.  They end up eating a whole new meal.  Good if you are looking to make money since they buy more but it just seems strange.

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Then the same thing happens with Liza.  She just randomly shows up after her parents have been there for hours and orders a meal.

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Avery shows up and eats alone.  Then some random townie I’ve never seen before joins her.  I wish if they were going to eat together that they would at least have some sort of a relationship.

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Cousin Johnny and his wife.  I doubt you’ll ever see him in the second generation since he’s not a favorite so I snapped a pic.

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MC Command Center got this waitress married and with child.  I think one of the chefs is pregnant too, I forget.

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The cop was sitting on the back deck, picked up his food and drink and walked all the way in here to talk to these ladies.  Of course he had to finish his drink and set it on the floor before he stood there still and ate his food.

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This is the only picture I took in this restaurant.  I forgot to lock the door to the kitchen and some guy came in and started rummaging in the trash.  The reason I closed and replaced the restaurant is because literally every person that came in sat at the bar, not a table, then waited for hours and left with 1 star!

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Confused?  Let me explain.  After the bar debacle I decided to get the restaurant that Kristof would own in the story.  So I had it all planned out to have a grand opening there for the first Holt chapter.  First I tried to get Keegan to throw a dinner party there.  Apparently that’s not an option.  So I sent him to the restaurant thinking that was the issue.  Still can’t.  Fine.  I try to throw a birthday party.  Can’t.  So I switch houses to Isaac’s.  Send him to the restaurant and have him throw a birthday party.  Silly me everyone shows up in party wear.  So I have him and Misty ask everyone to change to formal wear.  He requests a table and only Fallon sits with him.  *sigh*  I look to see where everyone is and they are all congregating in the basement kitchen  trying to get quick meals out of the fridge!  So I add them all to the household.  Try to make them all sit at the table.  Keegan can’t.  It says the table is taken.  So I disband the group, start a new group and request the table again.  I look and Keegan is nowhere to be seen.  Here’s where I found him.  Way out behind the restaurant going to grab food off of a table!

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Now when I first brought them all to the restaurant it was just after 9am because the kids had just gone to school. Keegan goes to work at 7pm and at the time that he got up to leave they still hadn’t eaten.  I canceled him going to work and when the food came there was none for him.  I decided just to angle the screenshots so you couldn’t tell he had no food and be done with it.  That’s when Misty stood up and peed herself.  At some point I had turned freewill off because they kept getting up from the table.  I was going to take a nice picture of the waitress delivering the food when I saw her.  *sigh*  What on earth?  Then Kyler stood up and peed himself and I gave up.  I got a total of 3 screenshots and only one I like.  They were there for 12 hours!

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The next day I decided to turn aging back off and have Kristof open the restaurant because I wanted to hire a third server.  For some reason all of his perk points were gone!  This picture is the aftermath of the meal gone wrong. Notice the pee puddles?

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Despite everything I do enjoy running a restaurant.  But once again I’m scratching my head over who on earth these sims are?  In my rotation I kept having to manage worlds and delete the huge number of townies that the game kept generating to eat at the restaurant.  Why?  Both saves have TONS of sims!  Why not use those???

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They were so busy I brought Micaela to help run the restaurant.  I just thought it was funny that she was talking to them through the wall.  I wonder who the weirdo is that Johnny’s wife is dining with?

what

And lastly.  I was playing the Holts the night of the dinner disaster and got a message that the restaurant was losing money.  I was confused.  I never opened the restaurant!  I clicked on it and saw this.  Apparently when I was playing everyone from Isaac’s household it opened the restaurant.