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A Reverie: The Cohen Legacy

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Chapter 1 - A Chance Encounter

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I glanced around the ground floor of the "museum." Empty. I straightened the brim of my ridiculous hat as I traipsed up the stairs to the third level. Francisca had relished our amateurish attempts at cloak and dagger meetings, but I was beginning to lose patience with the charade. She hadn't arrived yet, leaving me to contemplate the so-called objets d'art on display.

I had been there dozens of times, and it was my favorite place back when I had never been anywhere but Hidden Springs. I'd spent the last two years in the Peace Corps, not only seeing the world, but making it a better place. Everything in my hometown lost its luster in light of that high. The last few weeks before I left for another enlistment seemed interminable.

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A woman in a trucker cap approached me and whispered ominously, "I hear the cuckoos are nesting in Meadow Beach this year."
It was Francisca's passcode. I rolled my eyes under my sunglasses before replying, "Thanks for the warning, I'll be sure to carry an umbrella on my picnic."
She giggled and said, "That hat is big enough to be an umbrella! And you don't sound very sincere today, Ruthie."
"You look silly in that cap, too."
"Were you followed?" she asked, looking around.
"Of course not! Who would bother?" I couldn't ease her paranoia, which made perfect sense. Hidden Springs is so small. It amazed me that she had remained undiscovered as long as she had. "Has your boss figured out who you are yet?"
"No," she snickered, "I don't think his investigative skills are very strong!" We both got a good laugh out of that. Who would expect the missing princess to be working at the local newspaper? "Anyway," she continued "I wanted to ask you to make sure to tell me if anything interesting happens at your dad's fundraiser tonight, since I can't be seen there."
I said I would, but the reminder of the party ruined my good mood. Her mother may be the queen, but my father was the governor, and that saddled me with plenty of unwanted social obligations.
She thanked me and we exchanged more small talk, gossip, and chatted about the latest episodes of our favorite TV shows before she said she had to go interview someone for work. She instructed me to wait ten minutes before following her so no one would think we had met up. I sighed, and played on my phone for a while before turning to leave.

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On the second floor, a man I'd never seen before stood at the foot of the stairs looking at a painting. I would have to pass within a yard of him to reach the other stairway. I couldn't help but laugh at how unimpressed he seemed with the art.
"I've always wondered what they were smoking when they chose pieces for this place." I said as I walked down the stairs.
He turned to look at me. His eyes were a startling light grey that stood out against his dark skin. I suddenly felt flustered and hoped that my sunglasses would hide it.
"Yeah, it's definitely..." he paused and I remembered how ❤️❤️❤️❤️ I must look in that huge hat, "unorthodox," he grinned.
Fake it 'til you make it. I reminded myself as I reached the last step. "What brings you to Hidden Springs? Surely not the art."
"No, not at all" he said with a shake of his head. "I'm just touring a lot of different places, seeing what's out there, what each town has to offer."
I squealed just a tiny bit, he had found my weakness. "That's awesome! I think travel is one of the best things in life!"
"Yeah, it's up there near the top, but I can think of a few that are better." They way he smiled and raised his eyebrows told me exactly what he meant.
I smiled too, feeling flattered and exhilarated. I leaned forward to flirt back, but my stupid hat bumped into his nose. "Oh plum! I am so sorry!" I felt my face heating up as I rambled on, apologizing over and over.
"Hey," He said, finally putting both his hands on my shoulders to stop me. "Hey, it's okay. Really. Didn't hurt a bit."
"Sorry." I said one more time.
He chuckled and his hands slid down my arms. "Do you know where we can get a drink? And I'll tell you all about my travels."
"Han's is right across the street, it's garish and kitschy, but I can't anyway, I have somewhere to go." I'd lost my cool and kept floundering, mentally kicking myself, knowing I was blowing it.
"Oh," he said, backing away. "Boyfriend?"
"Parents." I sighed.
"Sorry," he stuffed his hands in his pockets and looked at the floor. "I didn't realize you were that young."
I blurted out "I'm not! They're just, just... How about breakfast? At the diner? Then I'll show you around town."
"Okay. Sounds good. I'm Lance, by the way."
"Oh, Ruth. See you tomorrow." I got out of there as quickly as I could, before I could embarrass myself any further.

Comments

  • JoAnne65JoAnne65 Posts: 22,951 Member
    edited November 2015
    Love it, it's a thriller/detective! Tongue-in-cheek ;) The appreciation for modern art is totally him by the way.

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  • Peach77Peach77 Posts: 313 Member
    Chapter 1.2 - Obligations

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    My mother hovered behind me as I finished applying my warpaint, giving her final instructions before the party. I only half listened, knowing she would repeat many of the same things she had said as she combed my hair when I was a little girl.
    "Don't embarrass me tonight, Ruth. I don't want to hear a single complaint about the status quo."
    "Yes, mother." I blinked slowly. Don't roll your eyes, she can see it in the mirror.
    "Gossip is unbecoming, darling, keep your ears open and your mouth shut."
    "Yes, mother." Yep, it was the same old spiel.
    "And Prince Sebastian-" she began.
    "I KNOW, mother!" I interrupted.
    "You're grown now. One day-"
    "Never going to happen."
    "You'll see" she muttered stubbornly as she walked out.
    I sighed deeply, shaking my head, but relieved that she hadn't lost her temper yet.

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    I couldn't avoid Sebastian entirely, especially since he thought I desperately awaited news about Francisca. Which I did, relaying his leads helped her stay hidden. She was my best friend, the closest I'd ever had to a sister, and I would look like a fool or endure her brother for her. When he caught my eye across the room, I nodded, and before long he showed up at my elbow.
    "Excuse us, Bert, thanks so much," he said smoothly pulling me away from Mr. Alto and onto the dance floor for a waltz.
    I avoided looking at him while he made the usual small talk: so good to see you again, lovely party, all the meaningless trifles charming princes say. My own responses were just as hollow until he chuckled, "Thanks for chasing off the vultures." I saw Eunice Petridge over his shoulder, her too small dress one jiggle away from a ❤️❤️❤️❤️ slip.
    "Yep, I got all dressed up just to be a scarecrow," I said icily, finally looking him in the eye.
    "No, I don't mean... Why do you always have to twist everything I say?"
    I wanted to rant about the past, but I said nothing, and after a moment he looked away.
    "I won't quit until I find her, Roo," he eventually said softly, meaning Francisca.
    When I heard my childhood nickname I stiffened and jerked away from him. "No, don't ever call me that again!" I turned and rushed outside to try to breathe.
    He followed, probably as suave as James Bond while he made his way across the room. I only had a moment in the cool dark to gulp some air before he came through the door and crossed the terrace to lean against the rail next to me.
    "It's been four years now. How many times do I have to apologize?" he asked.
    "You don't have to. I don't want to hear it anymore."
    "What do you want, then?"
    The silence stretched on into the night while I thought about what to say. I had asked myself the same question so many times without finding a definitive answer, but there was one thing I could tell him that was true.
    "I wish none of it ever happened."
    "None of it?"
    "None of it."

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    After the party I stared quietly at a book without having the energy to actually read it. I heard my mother slamming her drawers and stomping as she changed clothes. My father's voice came through the walls as just a murmur, trying to calm her down. His efforts backfired and she barged down the hallway into the room.
    "You're supposed to be enticing the prince, not arguing with him!" she began predictably.
    I had already rehearsed how to respond to this tack. "I'm sorry, mother." I looked down at my toes, pretending to be contrite. "I just can't feel any affection for someone who's such a..." Snake! Liar! Cheater! "...a party-animal." I swallowed and rolled my eyes up in their sockets to look at her reaction without moving my head: sad puppy face time.
    This tactic worked to deflate her wrath. "Of course," she began, staring blankly as she sank into one of the chairs. "You're so innocent, his reputation would intimidate you. I don't know why I didn't see that before." I imagined the wheels turning in her head as she prepared to redirect. She continued, thinking out loud, "you don't have the feminine wiles yet to keep him faithful." That much was very painfully true, even if it had happened at boarding school and outside of her purview. "But maybe you don't have to..."
    Uh-oh! Smuggsworth Prep School had been a den of vipers, a true training ground for the logic required for intrigue, but I could never hope to match my mother's innate brilliance and ambition. I could only leverage the advantage I had: information, and the fact that I wasn't trying to take over the world, or even Hidden Springs, just struggling to avoid entanglement in her plots.
    "Listen, angel, here is the new plan." ❤️❤️❤️❤️! She was fast! I had hoped to buy at least a day. "Actually, this is even better for everyone. You'll continue as before, don't worry, I've seen the way he looks at you, it will be easy. Give him something meaningful, that you've never given anyone else." She paused to look at me, to make sure I knew what she meant.
    "You want me to sleep with him!?" I feigned surprise, the outrage was real though.
    "Don't be afraid, we'll talk more soon so you'll be prepared. We'll make sure the press knows you're officially a couple. Now here is the part you'll like. You'll go on your Peace Corps tour as planned, and while you're gone, he'll have an affair, and the press will know about that too. You'll be free to break up with him when you get back, the sweet, heartbroken party who was off doing charity while he was partying. Sound better?"
    Great mom, I thought sarcastically, except for the part where that already happened, minus the press!
    "I don't know..." I stalled.
    "Just sleep on it, I'm sure you'll see that this is preferable to a marriage."
    She hugged me in an uncharacteristically maternal gesture, setting off my spidey sense. I didn't like how she changed her tune with so little argument. My gut said she was up to something, or already had this plan waiting on a back-burner. I had to figure everything out, and fast, because no way in hell would I let Sebastian touch me.
  • Peach77Peach77 Posts: 313 Member
    I found in writing this part that I'm not sure what crosses the line of a Teen rating and better to be safe than sorry. So I made a blog, simperalltheway. The good news is that it can also act as a platform for all the extra screenshots I would really like to share, but that didn't tell the story the way I needed, plus random mischief.

    Chapter 1.3 - A Day in the Sun
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  • Peach77Peach77 Posts: 313 Member
    Took twice as long as I wanted due to Thanksgiving guests and the beginning of finals. Luckily, after Tuesday, I'll be done with classes until mid-January and can hopefully speed up some.

    Chapter 1.4 - Testing the Waters
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  • JoAnne65JoAnne65 Posts: 22,951 Member
    I admire your writing skills. "His kisses were ephemeral, like a whisper and then gone." Love that kind of lines. Very visual and poetic.
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  • Peach77Peach77 Posts: 313 Member
    @JoAnne65 Thanks so much! It's been forever since I wrote anything other than a research paper, so all the forbidden purple is coming out!

    Chapter 1.5 Idyll
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  • JoAnne65JoAnne65 Posts: 22,951 Member
    One reaction: *sigh* I'm almost falling in love with him lol
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  • HappySimmer3HappySimmer3 Posts: 6,699 Member
    Peach77 wrote: »

    Just read your story - very good writing and interesting drama! Enjoyed it very much. :)
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    Where are we going, and why am I in this hand basket?!
  • Peach77Peach77 Posts: 313 Member
    @HappySimmer3 Thanks so much! It's really been a blast to do. :D
  • JoAnne65JoAnne65 Posts: 22,951 Member
    edited January 2016
    I read it a couple of days ago and forgot to leave a reaction. Back to her ordinary life or so it seems. Kind of curious if all the gossip about Lance is true (in this stage of his life) ;) He seems to be genuinely fond of her, but is he..
    Your story reads like a movie somehow, love it.
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  • Peach77Peach77 Posts: 313 Member
    You know, I've debated with myself a lot about what's going on in his head and what they're going to say the next time they meet. It's funny because I originally intended a one night stand where that would have been a lot more cut and dried, but things went differently in game, mostly because of Commitment Issues and interaction rejection, and it changed my plans. I think it worked out better this way though.

    It means a lot to me that you love it. I'd feel terrible if you hated what I did with him. :p

    Oh, and I made outtakes this time.
  • JoAnne65JoAnne65 Posts: 22,951 Member
    On the contrary, in fact it somehow adds depth to my own game, this backstory of him, because I had no idea where he came from when I dropped him in Bridgeport. I downloaded a lot of your pictures by the way (also from the outtakes, haha, Sebastian tickling him, how dare he), he looks gorgeous in your game.

    I love your sim by the way. She reminds me of a character in Downton Abbey, lady Edith.

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  • Peach77Peach77 Posts: 313 Member
    LOL, he's just gorgeous period. You couldn't even hide it when you dress him up as a bum. :p He just has perfectly chiseled bones no matter how he's costumed.

    As a knight.
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    As a sultan.
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    As trouble.
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    Trying on other skins.
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    Van is in Bridgeport because I sent his father there a long time ago to exploit playing for tips in the subway. They ran into each other at a party. "How do I get women to give me the time of day?" My daughter was rolling on my lap and I missed the next speech bubble, which was Lance talking about Van's mother and then the teenage sister. I'm still laughing about that one.
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    I have really had a lot of fun with him. :D

    I've never seen Downtown Abbey because I'm so outnumbered here, the TV is completely taken over. But I see what you mean, especially in Roaring Heights hair.
  • JoAnne65JoAnne65 Posts: 22,951 Member
    edited January 2016
    But CC obviously suits him very well is what I mean.
    The funny thing is, I never meant for him to be a hunk. Which is one of the reasons I chose ugly eyebrows for him, the eyebrows you used for him as a sultan are perfect (also custom I think?), and the haircut is quite important as well of course).
    I fell in the middle of your story, so I'm not sure who Van is? And who is the guy (quite a looker too!) in the 'as trouble' shoot? His son to be?

    Anyway, I reall love those shoots of him, going to add them to my collection here ^.^ I realize more and more - also thanks to @GaiaHypothesis' story - playing with hideheadlineeffects has its downsides btw :D I love it you like him, my son :#
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  • HappySimmer3HappySimmer3 Posts: 6,699 Member
    Ha! I didn't even notice that you were using JoAnne65's sim until I checked your thread again today and read your convo. Very creative. :)
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    Where are we going, and why am I in this hand basket?!
  • Peach77Peach77 Posts: 313 Member
    @joann65 LOL, in that case I would love to see one you intentionally made to be hot. :p IDK, the screen might explode.

    One of the reasons I kept Lance's original eyebrows was because I didn't have any that matched the same angle and it changed the expression on his face. I think those others were from Ephemera's brow collection though. Also, I like him a lot with the same hair as Elijah.

    Van Lessen was a dorky lookin' teen from an old save. I had gotten a lot of EPs and CC and went to see how different the family looked. I had shortened the age span and he wanted to age up.
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    Not so dorky with hair. And beard. And eyeliner. And Maori tattoos that cover his backside.
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    Oh, he's going to show up. Eventually.

    And, yes, that's exactly who the other scruffy guy is. I wanted to look at them side by side. They look very different from the profile though.

    I think my favorite time to see the speech bubbles is when teaching a toddler to talk. I like to string together the different things as if the parent is telling the kid a story.

    @HappySimmer3 It's funny how just changing the hair, beard, and clothes can throw people off. Then with short hair and totally shaved I don't know that I would recognize Lance from some angles either. Only that picture did not want to upload even after about 10 minutes and I gave up for now.
  • JoAnne65JoAnne65 Posts: 22,951 Member
    edited January 2016
    I think a lot comes down to what we consider hunks. I meant Lance to look like a sleazy car salesman and I think he does :D, especially with that Showtime ponytail haircut. But sleazy car salesmen (and other kind of ❤️❤️❤️❤️) can look very attractive as well of course, in a 'dangerous' way. Personally I'm more attracted to softies so a lot of my men end up like that. Men with big dreamy or droopy eyes are my weak spot.

    If by the 'Elijah haircut' you mean my Elijah (the Store haircut with the hair split in two, surrounding their face like curtains), that one makes the worst pudding face look kind of hunky imo. Wish they'd done more of those...
    His son is great. In fact a son like that is more realistic, in real life people never copy features of their parents. I hope we'll soon get the next chapter and the moment she finds out she's pregnant. And how her family will respond to that. And Lance... (if he finds out in the first place of course).
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  • Peach77Peach77 Posts: 313 Member
    I love it when they look rough, but are romantic and principled on the inside. IDK if there's a technical term, but I call it the Aragorn effect. :p Which would probably explain why I like Lance so much and the idea that there's more to him than screwing around because it's fun. Maybe it's just that an anti-hero is more interesting than pretty and straightforward.

    Anyway, update will be soon. The words are done. Pictures are not because the full moon screwed up the lighting for one scene and I got distracted trying to find better poses instead of just redoing it.
  • JoAnne65JoAnne65 Posts: 22,951 Member
    edited January 2016
    That's so sad...

    edit: your episode left me so sad I forgot about Aragorn; I so agree about him! (the everyday looks of the actor left me kind of disappointed I must confess...)
    Post edited by JoAnne65 on
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  • Peach77Peach77 Posts: 313 Member
    Yeah, it was hard, even knowing from the beginning that Lance has places to go and people to do. Since the relationship bar was full from the days of risky woohoo it took to get her pregnant, they were still good friends even after she asked to just be friends, so I didn't think I could justify walking away unscathed. I totally bawled writing it and my husband thought I was nuts.

    I don't like Viggo Mortenson without his beard and hair, either. The same goes for the man who played Thorin, and it's so bizarre to think of someone being hotter as a dwarf than as a human.
  • JoAnne65JoAnne65 Posts: 22,951 Member
    Poor Richard Armitage (but so true) :D
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  • Peach77Peach77 Posts: 313 Member
    The conclusion to Chapter 1:

    Chapter 1.9 - Cold as Ice
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