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Under The Tartosan Sun

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    simgirl1010simgirl1010 Posts: 36,391 Member
    Congrats to Danielle and Londyn! How exciting that they both won awards!

    Loved your narration of the ceremony and inclusion of the other attending characters. Felt like I was actually there. :)

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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,263 Member
    @luciusstorm @simgirl1010 Thank you both very much. I think it was worth the extra work in the end.
    I was surprised by the way the dialogue evolved and gave Danielle one last chance to score a win over Faith.😁 When I was in the game and watching her win the award that little detail didn't occur to me.
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    EllupelluelluEllupelluellu Posts: 7,323 Member
    Congrats for both winnings! I second simgirl1010, very enjoyable gala! <3
    My love, my love, my fearless love, I will not say goodbye..
    Sea may rise, sky may fall, My love will never die..
    My heart, my heart, My drowning heart, Oh all the tears I've cried
    Oh I may weep forevermore, My love will never die..
    My Story:Villa Catarina
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    haneulhaneul Posts: 1,954 Member
    A new chapter!
    I'm glad to see the Accolades turned out so well for both of them! Congrats! I like the detail of the congratulatory texts from friends. It's a sweet touch. Everything came together quite seamlessly, so I have no idea about which parts you reshot. I look forward to seeing their remodeled upstairs/bedroom.
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,263 Member
    @Ellupelluellu Thank you so much. I was surprised because I didn’t think both active sims could win an award during the same event. I did take one small liberty. Londyn’s award was actually the very first one handed out and Danielle’s was the last. I had to send Londyn up there to distract the host so she’d get out of the way. The show was going to end any minute and I would have been so upset if Danielle didn’t get here award because of it.

    @hanuel Thank you to you also.
    The reshoots were for them arriving and walking the red carpet. I think I redid those 10 times hoping for bigger crowds. In the future I may need to use group poses. Or put some small build object that would draw more sims to the area. Another delay was creating a new sim too, Londyn’s agent Melissa. She’s another of those fringe characters that will pop up every now and then. I kept finding bits of dialogue where I didn’t have a picture I liked so back I went to stage it. The renovations on their home are going to be major, not just a new bedroom. I’m going to work it into the story like I did with Liberty redecorating their home. That should make for some interesting storylines.
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    haneulhaneul Posts: 1,954 Member
    @hanuel Thank you to you also.
    The reshoots were for them arriving and walking the red carpet. I think I redid those 10 times hoping for bigger crowds. In the future I may need to use group poses. Or put some small build object that would draw more sims to the area. Another delay was creating a new sim too, Londyn’s agent Melissa. She’s another of those fringe characters that will pop up every now and then. I kept finding bits of dialogue where I didn’t have a picture I liked so back I went to stage it. The renovations on their home are going to be major, not just a new bedroom. I’m going to work it into the story like I did with Liberty redecorating their home. That should make for some interesting storylines.

    @DaniRose2143
    It can be hard to get crowds. You may have already tried this, but if not (and if you're not opposed to mods) put a mailbox somewhere on the lot and maybe try using MCCC to summon a bunch of sims there or maybe try CC decosims. Major renovations are always nice. I'm similarly working build things into my storyline, but I don't have enough patience and I've already shared/spoiled the build all over the forums... I look forward to your reveal of the renovations.

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    GalacticGalGalacticGal Posts: 29,085 Member
    @DaniRose2143 That was fun! I'm so happy for you. I know you were concerned you might not have such a night in your 'real' save. But for two to win, I've yet to experience that in my game. Sweet. Well done. :)
    You can download (free) all three volumes of my Night Whispers Star Trek Fanfiction here: http://galacticgal.deviantart.com/gallery/ You'll need to have a pdf reader. New websites: http://www.trekkiefanfiction.com/st-tos.php
    http://www.getfreeebooks.com/star-trek-original-series-fan-fiction-trilogy/
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    GalacticGalGalacticGal Posts: 29,085 Member
    If I had any idea that my original ideas for this chapter were going to take the turns they did, I would have started writing on Tuesday instead of Thursday. Those of you who are SimLit writers yourself know exactly what happened here. Once I started writing so much of the work and shots I did earlier went right out the window. More often than not now I follow wherever the dialogue leads, not where the shots lead. It's funny how the gameplay and screenshots start the writing process, but then when the words start flowing, sometimes they go off in another direction or need even more shots than what I already had. This one chapter and the Starlight Lounge build added 6 pages to my Imgur gallery in one week. I'm really happy with the end result, so all the extra work was worth it.

    I know exactly where you're at on this. Sometimes, a picture will inspire a bit of dialogue for me, so I will quickly jot down the dialogue. I'm even learning to start a chapter when inspirations strikes. (Took me long enough to learn this lesson.) Once in awhile what I started with with actual be in the chapter, other times, I bump it down the page to see when or where I can include it. You just never know where the Muse will take you. This chapter of yours turned out very nice.
    You can download (free) all three volumes of my Night Whispers Star Trek Fanfiction here: http://galacticgal.deviantart.com/gallery/ You'll need to have a pdf reader. New websites: http://www.trekkiefanfiction.com/st-tos.php
    http://www.getfreeebooks.com/star-trek-original-series-fan-fiction-trilogy/
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,263 Member
    edited December 2022
    @GalacticGal Thank you for the kind words. I was pleasantly surprised. All that time with no success and and now this. Every time I made changes to the new lot I would do an Accolade in a backup save, and every one of those tests either Danielle or Londyn walked off with an award. And then my first ever official Starlight Accolades and both of my ladies walked away winners!

    I must have built some luck into that lot.😁
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    GalacticGalGalacticGal Posts: 29,085 Member
    @GalacticGal Thank you for the kind words. I was pleasantly surprised. All that time with no success and and now this. Every time I made changes to the new lot I would do an Accolade in a backup save, and every one of those tests either Danielle or Londyn walked off with an award. And then my first ever official Starlight Accolades and both of my ladies walked away winners!

    I must have built some luck into that lot.😁

    Thrilling, isn't it? So happy for you. :smiley:
    You can download (free) all three volumes of my Night Whispers Star Trek Fanfiction here: http://galacticgal.deviantart.com/gallery/ You'll need to have a pdf reader. New websites: http://www.trekkiefanfiction.com/st-tos.php
    http://www.getfreeebooks.com/star-trek-original-series-fan-fiction-trilogy/
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    hellohannah2hellohannah2 Posts: 839 Member
    edited December 2022
    That was super!
    I'm so thrilled for both of them, the accolades couldn't have been a more roaring success for them. I loved seeing how Faith's final plan to prevent Summer from finding out about her nomination really backfired on her - I wish nothing but the absolute worst vibes for that woman haha.
    "Before going to see Bianca later that morning the girls took a walk down the beach to enjoy the beautiful moment where the line between dusk and dawn blurs. The morning was picture postcard perfect. Warm gentle breezes coming on shore from somewhere far off over the ocean and the moon and stars as bright as spotlights as they grudgingly gave way to the sun."

    I also wanted to say that this piece was beautiful - do you ever read something and think darn.. I wish I'd written that myself? That's how i feel about this. You're such a talented writer <3

    Bring on the next update (in your own time, of course!!)
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,263 Member
    @hellohannah2 Thank you. You are so sweet.❤️
    The part about Faith staying quiet about the nomination happened in a split second. I was writing about how the mail service failed to deliver the letters and there it was. We all have those moments when we're writing that the muse points out things we missed. I thought we had heard the last of her before that so I will put it like this, I think we've seen the last of her unless I decide to give her a redemption storyline later.

    Thank you for those sweet sentiments about that passage and my writing.❤️ I know what you mean about thinking how I wish I had written something. But in a way you did write that passage, or at least had a hand in writing it. One of the many things I love about Lucky Girl is the way you paint a picture of the scene surrounding the action too. I know for a fact that I get caught up in describing the action and don't always take the time to paint the scene. I'm working on making that something I devote some thought to in hopes that it will become a bigger part of each chapter and make the story that much more fun.

    We'll see if I can get another chapter done this week or not with the new story starting up. My heart says yes but it may not be realistic. If not the two stories will alternate weeks.
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    hellohannah2hellohannah2 Posts: 839 Member
    @DaniRose2143 oh my gosh - this is so lovely to read! That means so so much to me, as my favourite part of any story is when the author can compose beautiful imagery and really manage to put you right there with the characters. I totally understand getting wrapped up in describing the action, because we want to get to the point of the story. I do this too - and it's not a bad thing, it's just a particular style. I'm one of those people who really likes to take in my surroundings anyway, wherever I go I like to be really present in the environment, so i suppose it naturally translates into writing. I'd love to see more of your descriptive writing personally, because you're so good at it. Whenever you take the time to add it in it just adds a real vividness. It's very evocative and I'm into it.
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,263 Member
    @hellohannah2 Now it's my turn to say that your words mean so so much to me. Thank you very much.🤗 It's all part of my growth as a writer. I'm looking at the game or the screenshots in front of me and my mind is filling in the scenes. I'm not used to sharing my stories and I keep forgetting to describe to my wonderful readers the scenes my imagination is painting. I'm like you, I love to be a part of my surroundings. As I continue to grow and learn if I keep making the effort to include these details it will become something I just do out of habit.

    It's really touching to read this kind of feedback.❤️
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,263 Member
    On behalf of myself and the entire cast of Under The Tartosan Sun, Happy Holidays! May you be surrounded by love and may all your wishes come true!💝

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    I've started work on the last chapter of the story for 2022. I'll have it ready to post on Friday. It's been so much fun following this merry little band of lovers over the last 8 months and I can't wait to see what the new year has in store for them.

    When will Darian propose to Summer? What's going to happen with her new cooking show?

    Where will Matteo and Liberty decide to have their wedding? Matteo has been contemplating a big move career move of his own, what will it be? What interesting cases will Liberty have to work on?

    What lies ahead for Danielle and Londyn in the new year? Who will Danielle sign her new book deal with? Londyn's dreams of stardom are about to come true, what new opportunities will follow?

    There is so much story left to tell and I look forward to sharing it all with you. Thank you again, from the bottom of my heart, for coming along with me on this ride.❤️



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    luciusstormluciusstorm Posts: 1,767 Member
    Happy Holidays!
    Fate is a riddle and we choose our own answer. Wyrd Girls
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    GalacticGalGalacticGal Posts: 29,085 Member
    Merry Christmas! And have a Happy New Year, too! Sorry, went to Midnight Services, got home early enough, but after struggling to stay awake, I hit a slight 'second wind' and didn't drop off to sleep quite as fast as I'd hoped. Somewhere in the one o'clock hour I drifted off. I'm sstill groggy. LOL
    You can download (free) all three volumes of my Night Whispers Star Trek Fanfiction here: http://galacticgal.deviantart.com/gallery/ You'll need to have a pdf reader. New websites: http://www.trekkiefanfiction.com/st-tos.php
    http://www.getfreeebooks.com/star-trek-original-series-fan-fiction-trilogy/
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,263 Member
    Merry Christmas! And have a Happy New Year, too! Sorry, went to Midnight Services, got home early enough, but after struggling to stay awake, I hit a slight 'second wind' and didn't drop off to sleep quite as fast as I'd hoped. Somewhere in the one o'clock hour I drifted off. I'm sstill groggy. LOL

    Thank you and I wish you the same.

    The opposite happened to me. Our family does most of our Christmas celebrating on Christmas Eve. I went off diet and had fun yesterday but the food coma didn't claim me until about 7 last night. I was getting ready to work on the next chapter and thought I'll stretch out on the bed for a minute. I spent the rest of the night in and out. Sleep for 20 or 30 minutes awake for the same, back and forth. I posted that Holiday message during one of those brief periods where I was awake. I've been up since 4 this morning working on little projects mostly updating my build/buy cc.🙂

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    haneulhaneul Posts: 1,954 Member
    I hope you had a merry Christmas! <3 If you're in the States, I hope you're staying warm too. What a sweet mistletoe kiss between Danielle and Londyn! :) Thanks for sharing that Christmas screenshot. I enjoyed following them and the other couples. Have you considered making an index or a sort of guide to the couples/Under the Tartosan Sun in the first post? Your story is fun and I think new readers would be interested, but may get a bit lost about how to start or when sifting through 18+ pages of the thread. I only ask because I've been thinking about what to do with my own legacy and I'm on the verge of recommending that people skip almost half of it and then go back to read the older parts later if they think it'd be helpful. I do not think you should tell your readers to skip anything, but it may be helpful to have a guide so people know how to start and can more easily find the posts. There's no real need, though, because your story is fine and will entice readers to figure it out.
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,263 Member
    edited December 2022
    @haneul Thank you so much. They are such a sweet couple it just seemed like the perfect fit. I am in the US and I’m not doing too bad right now. The worst of the cold started to lift yesterday. By Thursday it’s supposed to be 60F here.

    I had not even thought about that but it is great idea. There is a lot to sort through. The next chapter may be all about the ladies getting together and discussing all the things that are happening in their lives. The dialogue is taking an unexpected turn. Izabella and Leonardo may be an interlude instead. We’ll see how the rest of the chapter comes together.🙂

    Edit: This chapter has taken a delightful and surprising turn. The ladies just hanging out on the beach talking has wandered into a topic I will explain in more detail afterwards. You're going to see Liberty and Summer in different a light, a good light. Danielle has a surprise of her own. It doesn't change anything but it's still a fun twist. Izabella and Leonardo are definitely headed for an interlude or they will get pushed back to the chapter after this.
    Post edited by DaniRose2143 on
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,263 Member
    I'm making huge progress on the next chapter and I'm going to try, hopefully to have it posted a day early. With this being New Years weekend I'm going to try and post this Thursday evening. I have most of the dialogue written I need to get the pictures to go with it.

    I want to say again, from the bottom of my heart, thank you for coming along with me on this journey. The last few months have been a revelation and I can't wait to see what this story has in store for us in the new year. Thank you all so much!❤️
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,263 Member
    edited December 2022
    The dialogue is done. After work all I have left to do is grab some screenshots and it will be ready. I'm letting you know now so you can prepare yourself, this chapter is going to end in a super emotional cliffhanger. The following chapter will be two weeks after that, unless I can knock out Schemes and Dreams next chapter quickly. I would love to have a chapter of each story every week but I'm not convinced it's possible.




    Post edited by DaniRose2143 on
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,263 Member
    edited March 27
    **Warning**: This is a bit of a long read. It will pull at your heartstrings and the ending is emotionally charged. Two main characters fates are unknown. The circumstances involve a fire. If you have lost loved ones in this manner, or have experienced life altering effects from such a tragedy, I offer my sincere apologies for the subject matter.

    Chapter Thirty Two

    The morning after the Starlight Accolades was that special kind of beautiful that only Tartosa, or Sulani, can deliver. The run of slightly warmer than average temperatures showed no signs of going anywhere. It was already warm but not uncomfortable. Swimsuits and sundresses feel slightly odd in winter for Danielle, but perfectly normal to Londyn. They were up and ready get on with their day early despite the previous night's activities carrying over into the wee small hours of today. The excitement of last night's double win at the Accolades, and the unmistakable glow of their passionate celebration when they got home left them feeling like they might float away.

    After breakfast it was time to summon the girlfriends for some fun in the sun down to the beach. Life had been so hectic for everyone lately that the friends hadn't enjoyed much time together like this lately. Since the night at La Cucina Toscana when Matteo proposed the only other time they had come together was after Liberty's makeover. It would be so much fun getting together again with the people who knew them best and to share all the wonderful things that were happening in each others lives. Matteo and Darian decided to hang out and do some male bonding at a football match. Matteo thought it would be fun to introduce Darian to what Tartosans called 'The Beautiful Game'. They would meet up with the ladies later for some wine and dancing at Celebrazioni under the stars.
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    "I still can't get over the change in you Lib. You always were really pretty, but now…I don’t know any other word other than stunning. How does it feel now that you've had some time to get used to the new look?” Danielle asked.
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    "I'm loving it all but I'm still trying to get used to these nails." Liberty said as she stuck her hands up to admire the acrylic nails Bianca and Allegra picked out for her. "You've always had long nails and I watched you do everything so effortlessly. I never imagined how odd even the most ordinary task would feel. It's hard to describe, I had to stop and think and work out how to do everything. They are really pretty and I find myself stopping to admire them at times. I still have to tell myself those are my fingers. I love wearing nail polish but I could go either way about having nails this long."

    Summer was the one to ask the question Liberty's friends had been dying to ask, "What made you decide to have such a drastic makeover? You have always been really pretty, you didn't have to change a thing. Matteo certainly didn't have any issues with how you looked. His family didn't pressure you did they?
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    "No they didn't put any pressure on me at all. Once they knew how far I wanted to take this they both asked me more than once if I was doing this for myself or them." The ladies decided now would be a good time to setup their lounge chairs. This really was going to be a girl's day out.

    Danielle said, "So Lib, why did you do it?"

    "Its been on my mind for a while now. I started really thinking about it after the move to S.I.M.S. and meeting Matteo. I looked up and found myself in a very grown up world. Here I was still dressing and even acting like the girl I was at 16 or 17. I realized I'm a grown woman in her 20's and it was time to look and act like it."

    "Nobody thought you weren't acting like an adult" Summer responded. "I've always thought of you as being really mature, more than Danielle and I when we were growing up."

    "But that was when we were still teens. We were all so close," Liberty started and then paused while she thought about the rest of her reply. "I say this with love and respect, but we were so close that I don't think you really realized how little I changed as you two were changing and becoming adults. I feel like as you were becoming more grown up you just assumed I was too. We all left home, got adult jobs, and did adult thing like clubbing. I did grow up, some."
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    "I'm still not sure I understand why you decided to change your look so much." Danielle said. "I love it, it fits you. I am amazed by it all. And if you're happy, we're happy for you too and we're with you. I feel like it's just the surprise of it. I always thought you had yourself all sorted out."

    "I did too until I met Matteo and things between us got serious. Work was part of it too. We are expected to wear skirts or pants and professional looking tops. Shells and blazers kind of thing. Makeup is optional. I decided to go all in, heels, skirts, and a full face of makeup. I found that I really loved it. I wasn’t sure how I’d feel since I had never done it before. Not everyday anyway.”

    They sat in silence for a while. The lovely breeze blowing in over the indigo waters of the Simterranean under the blue Tartosan skies. The warmth of the sun and breeze mixed with the warmth of the sisterhood. None of them could picture anywhere else they would rather be right now than right here. Each of them felt a deep bond with the others. They had come half way around the world, the life long friends and the Sulani beauty. There was a deep and abiding love between them whether it was the bond of soulmates or simple friendship. Liberty broke the silence when she resumed her story.
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    “I’ve thought about this a lot recently. I feel like I clung on to my old look as a lifeline. It connected me emotionally to those fun days we had together growing up and that I had with my dad. I was afraid to grow up I think. Like if I did something magical and wonderful was going to eb lost forever. In a way it happen, but for all the things I lost and I found so many new and equally wonderful things to take their place.”

    “I felt like that for a time too” Danielle said. "At the same time I couldn't wait to get out of the house. Back then my mom was nagging me no end about why I wanted to write trashy romance novels instead of painting. Thank god she's finally come around and seen the light. Of course telling her about my royalty checks convinced her that her daughter wasn't the fool she thought."

    “I think we all struggle with that”, Londyn said, “I had to confront it a lot sooner then I expected and without the safety net I always hoped I’d have.”

    “If you don’t mind my asking, what was going through your mind?” Summer asked. “If you aren’t comfortable taking about it I understand and I won’t pressure you. I’m really curious because for you it was all so much different than it was for us.”

    “I don’t mind talking about it. You and Liberty are the sisters I always wanted. I feel like I can talk to you two about anything.” Londyn said, then she paused. She sat and gathered her thoughts, looking out across the ocean, watching the gulls as she did. Then she said, “I was scared. I was hurt. Above all at first, I was angry. I was 15 when I came out to my mom. Even then she didn’t handle it well at all. I kept hoping she would come around and be accepting, but things only got worse. I didn’t help things by taunting my mother bringing home my girlfriends and openly showing them affection in front of her. It wasn’t fair to those girls, because my mom didn’t just take it out on me, she saved some for them too. Being rejected the way I was and then storming out, I had to make that leap by myself. It was terrifying. I cried myself to sleep a lot.”

    “It’s so hard to reconcile the sweet loving person your mother is now with who she was then.” Danielle said, “I was lucky. My parents have always been very open-minded. Still, I wonder now if I had been honest with myself about my sexuality if it would have been so easy. Not because of them, but the world around us.”

    “Wait, what?” Summer said with just a hint of surprise in her voice. “You’re saying you knew as a teenager that you were a lesbian?”

    “Yes and no. I wasn’t sure what to make of the feelings I had. That day you and I talked after I knew I was in love with Londyn but I was afraid to say it, I wasn't entirely honest when I said I had never really had romantic feelings for women. I was so confused by what was happening to me back in high school, and scared. I overcompensated and tried to deny what I was feeling. Even when I knew I was in love with Londyn I was still trying to make sense of it all. If I could go back and talk to teenage me I would tell her there's nothing wrong with you, just let go and be who you are. And that one day you are going to move to Tartosa, meet an angel named Londyn and fall hopelessly, madly in love with her. Don't mess it up.”

    “Well since we’re being honest,” Summer said, “I did pick up on a few vibes from you back in school that made me think you might be a lesbian. I sort of mentioned it in our conversation about you and Londyn. You remember me saying I wasn’t totally surprised that you were in love with another woman. I said it because I didn’t feel like it was the right time to break it to you that I was expecting something like this at some point.”

    “Matteo mentioned it to me one night when we were lounging in the hot tub just talking. Why are you all looking at me like that? We do occasionally just sit in the hot tub and talk, it's not always about...you know" Liberty blushed. Some the blush was from her friends smiles and knowing what was going through their minds to cause those smiles. A lot of it was rerunning mental pictures of her and Matteo and the things they had done in that hot tub. "He said he picked up on it when you two first met and he was interested in seeing if there was a spark between you two. He said it was only something he sensed not anything you said or did."

    “In a way”, Summer said, “I’m mad at myself that I didn’t say something so that you could be comfortable and be yourself, but I look at you and Londyn together and I’m glad I didn’t. I might have messed up the sweetest romance I’ve ever seen.”

    Londyn turned on her lounge chair to look at Danielle before saying, “No Summer, I don’t think you would have. One way or another Danielle and I were going to find each other. We were destined to be together. I can’t explain it, but through all the romances I had, my heart kept telling me the one that I was meant to find was still out there somewhere." By now Londyn was talking to Danielle as much as she was Summer. "The instant I saw you at Celebrazioni, even without talking to you, I knew all my prayers had been answered. I found my soulmate. There was this overwhelming feeling of peace and joy, that everything had led me here to Tartosa and you.”

    “That day I met you on the beach I felt the same thing. My mind was a jumble at first.” Danielle said as her lips formed a blissful smile and her heart threatened to explode out of her chest. “In a way I was that uncertain teen all over again, but I couldn't take my eyes off you and I wouldn't have even if I could. I knew I never wanted another day to go by without you in my life. I make my living writing about romance and I don't feel like I can put into words what you mean to me or how much I love you."

    "I don't know, I think you did an amazing job" Liberty said as she fanned herself.

    As if Danielle and Londyn weren't spicing things up, Summer was about to add a bit more. Danielle's revelation had taken Summer back to a night when they were just 16. Liberty was at a family dinner so it was just the two of them. Summer was getting ready to head home. As they usually did they gave each other a kiss on the cheek. It was something all three of them did. They had learned it from watching movies and tv. It made them feel mature and sophisticated. In the movies, classy and stylish French women greeted each other with a 'la bise'. It became their little grownup thing.
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    That night however for a moment Summer thought Danielle was actually going to kiss her. Like a real romantic kiss on the lips. It was a fleeting look in Danielle's eyes, a one and done thing that Summer couldn't ever remember seeing before or since. But she was certain her best friend was going to kiss her.
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    Danielle gave her their ordinary cheek kiss, but there was more to it than just the look in her eyes, it was the way she had her head tilted and the angle she was taking. At the last second she righted herself and it was the ordinary kiss.
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    So now that the opportunity had presented itself, she couldn't help asking, "I have a question for you Dani, if you don't mind. It is really personal, but since we're being so open right now I thought I'd ask"

    "You're like a sister. I don't think we've ever had many secrets between us, so yeah, what is it?"

    "Did you ever, you know...think about giving me a kiss?"

    To Summer it felt like time froze as the 's' in kiss crossed her lips. But it was out there and there was no going back. How was her friend going to take this? Danielle is really laid back and isn't easily offended, but if that question crossed the line it was too late now. Summer suddenly felt like she'd gone too far.

    Danielle's face showed her surprise at hearing the question. She found herself taken back in time to that night. Without Summer saying what night it was, Danielle knew which one she was talking about. "Yes. There was a night it was just you and me, we were 16 I think, Liberty was off doing something, I can't remember what. You were getting ready to go home for the night." Danielle was starting to feel the blush rising in her cheeks. "I was getting ready to give you our little cheek kiss and for a second I wanted to wrap my arms around you and kiss you. I caught myself and gave you the regular kiss. I thought I was the only one who had any clue that I was even thinking about it, or how close I came to having my first lesbian kiss with one of my best friends. I suppose I owe you an apology for not being honest with you then about that and what I was going through."

    "You don't owe me any thing of the sort girl. I would have been surprised. Like really surprised and it never would have gone anywhere romantically, but I wouldn't have been upset at all if you had."

    Londyn had listening and it took her back to her teenage years and a situation with one of her friends. "Welcome to the wonderful world of lesbianism. I had my moment with my friend Janelle. We were sitting on the edge of that pool at my parent's place in Sulani. We were just talking and the conversation hit a lull. We were looking at one of those beautiful Sulani sunsets, the next thing I know my lips were pressed against hers. She locked her arms around me and we sat there for who knows how long making out until Buzz Killington came storming through the sliding glass doors.

    "Buzz Killington?" said Summer, slow to catch on.

    "My mom." Londyn said with a sly smile, knowing what was coming next. Summer turned the brightest shade of red. Liberty nearly choked on her lemonade when she turned and saw the blush wash over Summer. Danielle was reduced to gales of laughter.

    After Summer regained her composure, she said, “Since this has turned into a tell all session, I have a confession. I did make out with another girl once. Heather Warner. It was the summer between our sophomore and junior year of high school. You remember the woods next to the swimming pool on St. Claude Street? She was working as a lifeguard. One day on her break she came up to me and asked if I wanted see what it was like to kiss a girl. I had never given it any thought but in the moment I said yes. I don’t know why I said yes, but I did. We spent about 5 or 10 minutes making out. It was kind of nice, it was fun, but I knew afterwards it wasn’t for me. She wasn't nearly as rough and awkward to kiss as the boys were, but the spark wasn't there. Kissing Darian is mind-blowing, and with that stubble of his he has an exfoliating quality which is a bonus." That last bit had them all in tears of laughter. "What about you Lib? Did you ever have a moment where you wondered what it would be like?”

    “I did, once or twice, but I was never that adventurous romantically. I've always been certain about my sexuality. I was approached by Heather that summer too. I turned her down though, not that you were wrong not too. I hope she found what she was searching for that summer.” Liberty said. “What were we talking about before the conversation took that turn? I remember now, we were talking about the fear of growing up. Why don't we take it up over a little something to eat. I don't know about you but I'm feeling a bit hungry. Maybe some scones or macaroons? My treat.”

    The air around the water front shops was a mix of ocean breezes, salt, and the aromas emanating from the various restaurants and food stalls. A sim could gain five pounds just by inhaling deeply, the aroma of tomato, basil, and garlic. You could pause at the windows of the pasta shops and watch as artisans made pasta of infinite varieties by hand. The Galleria Bianca De Luca, was not far from here, as were dozens of boutiques guaranteed to make fashion disasters in the fashionistas. The shops along the waterfront and the square were a shoppers paradise. The romantic trattorias, with diners enjoying glasses of the local nectars and gastronomic delights al fresco will turn all but the most stone hearted into a hopeless romantic.
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    Morning was slowly giving way to afternoon. It felt like the morning didn't want to go, as if it was eavesdropping on the conversation and wanted to hang around to hear more. One could hardly blame it after the unexpectedly candid conversational turn that the morning had taken. That turn was just a small detour and they were back to talking about all the changes that had happened over the last few months.

    "Looking at the shops, reminded me, where did you two get those stunning gowns you wore to the Accolades? Were they Bianca De Luca?" Liberty wanted to know.

    "They were one of a kind creations from Bianca's own hands, yes. The price tags were eye-watering but those gowns were gorgeous. And we were the only ones to show up wearing her gowns" Danielle said, beaming. "I don't think we'll be the only ones for much longer. Every time we turned around some body would ask where we got them. I think Bianca is about to become very busy and very famous. Famous outside of Tartosa that is."

    "Matteo and I were jumping up and down on the sofa when you two won. We couldn't believe our friends were up there on that stage receiving awards. You two deserved those awards and I'm sure you'll have to build a room just to hold all of them. Speaking of which, we saw a big group of construction workers over there yesterday afternoon. I take it you two decided to go ahead and renovate instead of starting over?"

    "Yeah, the more we thought about it, the better it felt. That little island had become something special" Danielle said between bites of her 'World Famous Tartosian Fruit Tart' which had a lovely mix of berries and kiwi. "While we were falling in love with each other, we failed to notice we had fallen in love with the island. When we started looking for a new spot, that's when we realized we didn't want to go anywhere else."

    "That's how I feel about Tartosa as a whole" Liberty said. "Willow Creek is where I'm from, but Tartosa is home now."

    "I'll second that" said Summer as she raised her scone in lieu of a glass of nectar in a mock toast.

    "Danielle and I are already in the process of getting our citizenship. I can't picture wanting to live anywhere else."

    Liberty took up her remaining scone and said, "To la dulce vida! Matteo taught me that one, it means 'the sweet life'. I'd say I have a pretty sweet life. An exciting and challenging new career, a beautiful home overlooking the Simterranean sea, and the sweetest, most handsome man to share it all with. There are still moments were I can't believe he chose me to fall in love with."

    "Stop right there hun. There is nothing unbelievable about Matteo falling in love with you. He is not out of your league, and he never was. I suppose it's because I'm such a hopeless romantic, but I don't like that thinking. Love plays by its own rules and it doesn't care about ours." Danielle paused, her face took on a thoughtful expression then she said, "I just found the title and the story for my next novel, 'The Rules of Love'. Sorry baby, you're going to have to share the credit for the inspiration on this one." she to Londyn.

    "Who says I want to share!" Londyn said with mock outrage. She is a great actress but she didn't put much effort into trying to sell her line. "I'm happy to share with Liberty and Matteo" she said as she gave Liberty's hand a friendly squeeze.

    "He is the sweetest man. Darian is a sweetheart too, but he could learn a few things from Matteo" Summer said with a playful roll of her eyes. "That night at La Cucina when Matteo proposed to you, even these two," she said as she looked at Danielle and Londyn, "stopped flirting outrageously as soon as he got up. I love Darian madly, but I wanted to slap him up side his head when he stayed fixated on his Volcano Pasta and missed such a beautiful proposal. When we got home I gave him a bit of a lecture about it. He was very apologetic..."

    "Yeah he came over the next day and apologized in person to both of us."

    "I was upset with him about being rude, but what I really gave him grief for was not taking notes for when he proposes to me." Once again the group dissolved into laughter. Enough so that they momentarily became the center of attention in that little corner of the Tartosa square. Even the lovers dining al fresco stopped to see what the commotion was about. Nearby there was another commotion beginning to make its way into the square.

    "We both fell in love with a really good man" Liberty said. "Darian might not be quite as attentive as Matteo, but in his own sweet way he shows you how much he loves you all the time. I watched him like a hawk at first, I mean I'm protective of my sisters and after your relationships with Travis and Leonardo, I was worried. I shouldn't have been, Danielle spotted him and she knows what she's doing."

    "Aww, you are so sweet Lib." Danielle said. There was a pause that seemed to last an eternity, but in fact had only been a few seconds. Danielle gave words to the undefined interloper into their blissful day when she asked, "Do you smell smoke or is it just me?"

    "Now that you mention it, yeah, I do" said Londyn.

    "I hear sirens. They're really faint, but they seem to be getting closer. I wonder if one of the restaurants has a fire in the kitchen." Summer said as she stood up and scanned the area. As a professional chef she has unfortunately encountered a fire in a restaurant kitchen so the instinct to pinpoint that as the source was instinctive for her with all of the eateries in the vicinity. "I don't see smoke, and nobody is running out of any of the restaurants", she said, puzzled by the situation.

    "Look! Everybody is running towards town hall" Liberty said. "I can't see anything coming from the building though."

    "Look look look. Right over there I can see the smoke but the only thing over that way is...Celebrazioni." The name hung in the air like the smoke from the fire.

    "OH MY GOD, MATTEO!" Liberty screamed as realization set in. Danielle and Londyn were quick to wrap Liberty in a group hug as she tried to run towards the scene. "It's ok, hun, we're here. We've got you" Londyn whispered reassuringly into her ear. "I'm sure they got out okay. Maybe they weren't even there yet. They might have gotten stuck in traffic leaving the game. Dani, let's get her over here and sit down."

    "No no no no! I have to go look for Matteo! If it was one of you the other would go looking!"

    "And I would hope someone would stop me." Danielle said. "Sweetie I know you're scared for his safety. The best thing you can do is stay here. The fire fighters need room to get in there and do their job." Danielle shot Londyn a look that said, "Go see if you can find out anything." Londyn nodded and then made her way towards Celebrazioni.

    Liberty was sobbing on Danielle's shoulder. "If anything happened to him I'm going to die. I don’t think I could live without him."

    "Shh, I'm sure they're fine hun. Sit here with me sweetie" Danielle said as she comforted Liberty, but internally she wasn't so sure. Things didn't look good from what little she saw, but she would never say that in front of Liberty right now. Matteo and Darian's best hopes of surviving would be to have not been there at that time. It was out of their hands.

    Summer had caught up to Liberty's train of thought as her initial shock quickly wore off. Matteo and Darian said they were planning to head over there after the football match ended to wait on them to catch up after their girls day out. The guys told them to take their time that they would hang out at Celebrazioni. Summer kept her head in spite of the panic that was starting to build. Fire is a very real danger in a restaurant kitchen and they are well trained to keep their heads and respond to the situation. That training kicked in automatically for Summer and was the only reason she was able to keep her wits about her as she too was consumed by fear and worry for Darian. "I'm calling Darian now to see where they are" she said. To help keep everybody calm she went off by herself to make her call. "Darian, for the love of God answer your phone! Do not do this to me baby please..." she pleaded.
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    Post edited by DaniRose2143 on
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    luciusstormluciusstorm Posts: 1,767 Member
    @DaniRose2143, wow... still processing. I'll try for more than "wow" later.
    Fate is a riddle and we choose our own answer. Wyrd Girls
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,263 Member
    @luciusstorm Take your time. I spent four days writing it and I’m still trying to process it. I’m proud of this one from a storytelling perspective and feeling like I need to apologize to my readers for the emotional toll.

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