Category Archives: Generation 2: Arielle

Generation 2 – Chapter 16 Part 2

Arielle 

Seeing my children growing up was so emotional, I never thought I’d feel like this. Letting Oliver stay here at the Veloria Gallery for the past few months had been so hard, I almost called him to order him back home several times but I knew I shouldn’t. The things I was doing at his age, Howland… ugh I didn’t even want to think of it. ‘Ew!’ as the old me would have said. Thankfully I’ve grown up since then, but now is the hardest part, watching them go their own way, without me. There was Oliver, looking so much like his father, weaving his way through the room to chat with various buyers.

Such an artistic boy from a young age it’s no surprise that he’s doing so well now that he’s a fully grown man, the only thing I worried about was him and that Celeste woman, my PI hadn’t found anything on her really, apart from the fact she had been married twice before, both to rich men with famous family names, I’d have to keep my eye on her. Ah! There was Cora, she had grown up so much recently, she was so beautiful, just like all of my children. Piano was her specialty, that as well as playing tricks on everyone and anyone around her. So different from the others, probably because she grew up apart from them.

And there was Tommy, the eldest of the children. He was the strong one, always working hard on his sports, keeping a stiff upper lip and being a respectable man, I knew there was something else going on, I could just tell by looking at him. I felt a deep anger at Leo for not staying by his son all these years, I hadn’t heard from him since we broke up, but it just wasn’t right, it was hard on Tommy.

I wasn’t sure about his girlfriend, I hadn’t really had a chance to get to know her yet, but she seemed a little too fancy for him. And Kitty, my eldest daughter, how I loved her. So smart, a real intellectual with a quick wit she never failed to amaze me with all the achievements she racked up. She told me she’d invited a boy here tonight, which I was very happy about, I wanted her to experience all aspects of life, Jake hadn’t really been a true boyfriend for her.

The only one who was missing was Olive, I had to turn away from the crowded room so no one could see my sobs, it was so hard to think about her, I didn’t even know if she was okay. For all I know she could be lying dead in a ditch somewhere, I don’t even understand why she ran away! One day she was here, the next she was gone. It was so sad, but my PI was working on. I needed answers, needed to make sure she was okay.

And there was Noah, my rock, the love of my life, with the lines of age beginning to etch his face and grey flecked through his hair and beard he was still the most attractive man I had ever met. It still amazed me how in love we were after all these years. We may not have been able to spend every minute of every day together like we would have wanted, but amongst the chaos of the children we had managed to stick together, something I never thought I would have. I was the luckiest girl in the world.

Tommy

It was kind of odd seeing myself up on the wall again, it wasn’t as bad as last time because I wasn’t the only family member up, actually every family member was up, with Lily right at the top of the gallery, the founder of the family. It was her 75th birthday in three days so Oliver had thrown this special event showcasing all her descendants so far, a really cool idea actually, I just got her a card and some flowers.

I was also weird becuase I was so young in this photo. I was a man now, I had left school and was officially an adult, which was a scary thought. I had my first day of training on Monday, the start my athletic career. Thinking about that brought memories of Austin rushing to my head, I had heard that he was starting on Monday too, oh God seeing him in the changing rooms would be nerve racking, what if I got… happy. No, no, I had to think of Jennifer now, thought I didn’t really want to, she had started to change, started to get more… I don’t know, arrogant?

“Hi sweet cheeks.” Oh no, here she was now. She pulled me into a deep kiss before I could even get a word in, I wished she would stop, I really wasn’t into PDA.

“Jenny, stop.” I said, pushing her away lightly, I didn’t want people looking at pictures of us making out or anything.

“Tommy, kiss the girl again I wanna get a picture, page six here!” A photographer shouted from nearby. I quickly looked away from the camera, I wasn’t into that publicity stuff.

“Ill be right back.” Jenny said, fluffing out her hair and strutting off towards the photographer, probably to make sure he spelt her name right, argh she’d changed so much. AS I watched her walk across the room someone caught my eye. someone familiar, stood in the entrance.

Shit! What the hell was Austin doing here, how did he know about it?! I quickly moved to the back of the gallery, in front of the central picture of grandma, hoping he wouldn’t spot me.

“Tommy.” His deep voice reminded me of the time we used to spend together, jeez we were best friends before that night in the maze, that night though… I still thought about it, but I really did like Jenny, the fame of the Belgravia’s was going to her head, but if she could come back down to earth I could see a real furture there.

We stood staring at each other uneasily, it had been years since we had last been so close, passing in the hallways at school we’d just ignore each other.

“So, how’ve you been…” I asked  wearily.

“Come here man!” And before I knew it we were embracing in a friendly hug, slapping each other on the back and laughing, it was as if all the antagonism of the  last few years had just disappeared. To anyone looking over it would have just looked like two guys greeting each other, but I could feel the sexual tension, the hairs on the back of my neck rising and my cheeks blushing.

“It’s really good to see you again dude, I heard you were here and I just had to see you. I mean, we’re gonna be on the team together every day come monday, so we might as well get to how we used to be again huh?” Austins smiled, his lips turning up at the corners in a suggestive smirk, he was definitely remembering the night in the maze.

“We definitely have to get back to how we were before.” Before I could even think about what I was doing I grabbed his waist and pulled him into the empty supply closet, pushing him against the wall and making out with him as if another force had taken over my body that had only one aim; to get hot and heavy with Austin.

The only thing on my mind was having Austin with me, it just felt so right. I didn’t know how to explain it, Jenny felt really amazing, she was a great girl (or she was) but it was as if I’d finally found where my piece of the puzzle fit, and it was with Austin. He was just as into it as me, we couldn’t keep our hands off each other, our hands trailing under each others shirts, barely coming up for breath. We never heard the door open until the heavy metal slammed shut,.

“TOMMY?!”

Kitty

I guess the party was a success, I mean the Redcliffe art crowd wasn’t really my scene, they were all so pretentious. Don’t get me wrong the majority of intellectuals are pretentious know it alls, but at least I was interested in the same things as them. I personally cringed every time I saw my painting, I mean Oliver was an amazing artist but just showcasing myself that much really wasn’t my scene. Laurence still hadn’t arrived, I was beginning to think he wouldn’t show. I had to go out onto the street before people saw how upset I was, all my siblings seemed to have some sort of love drama going on, except me!

Come on Kitty, pull yourself together! Maybe he was just late, he’d called me and found out where it was and the time and everything, why would he bother if he didn’t plan on showing? I forced a smile and began to make my way inside, maybe he would show.

“Hey Kitty. Whats up?” Cora asked as I sat down at the bar. I wished I knew her a little better, we hadn’t really spent much time together growing up. It was odd that she had no siblings who were her age where I had Tommy and Olive at that age, always doing things together, always talking, poor Cora.

“Nothing Cora I’m fine. You enjoying the party?”

“Yeah, I hate the picture of me though! Couldn’t he have waited till I grew up a little before painting me? No one will even know it’s me!” She sighed dramatically, she was quite the drama queen.

“It has your name under it…”

“Whatever.” Flicking her hair she got up and went to talk with her music teacher, who she seemed to have a closer relationship with than was normal… hmm.

Moving out into the other room I got quite the shock, there he was! Admiring a painting of Oliver, oh I knew he’d come!

“Hi!” I smiled as I walked over to him. “So glad you came, I was beginning to think you wouldn’t make it.”

“Oh I know, sorry I’m so late. Great paintings by the way, your brother’s really talented.” He was so handsome, and kind. I was glad he’d made it.

“He really is, you should go tell him, I think secretly he loves getting the praise.”

“I will later, for now  I want to spend time with you.” Wow. So the right thing to say. After talking for a while I learnt that he had recently graduated, like me, and was moving towards a career in politics, um- perfect much?

“Well I’m glad you came. I should go say hi to my mom.” As I made to move off he grabbed my hand, and seeming to think for a second he gave me a very soft, very sweet kiss. A perfect kiss. Things had moved a lot slower with Jake but maybe I should just go for it, maybe I’ve been good little Kitty for too long.

*      *      *

And that’s it! Generation 2 has came to a close, with a lot of cliffhangers for each child, just to make it that much harder for you to vote!

Click – HERE – to vote!

Generation 2 – Chapter 16 Part 1

Oliver

Celeste had suggested I move on with another show as quickly as possible. My art was getting rave reviews from the critics and the buyers were clamoring for more work. The  most popular were the paintings I did of Celeste and of Tommy, in such a short space of time they had been dubbed the new necessity for social acceptance in the art world, if I’d painted you, then you’d apparently ‘made it’. I’d already started more portraits for a show I wanted to do in the future with one of Kitty.

The portrait show that I saw for the future would be a mix of ordinary people I’d just ask to pose, combined with a scattering of models and celebrities to bring the crowds in. I hoped I could get Ingrid Cale to pose for me, she would definitely bring a lot of attention to the work, as well as grandma. I hadn’t actually asked her to pose for me, I presumed she’d be down for it but I wasn’t really sure how she felt about being painted, definitely need to check that one out. Although the portrait gallery was my focus at the moment it was still a long way off. It would take time to sit down with a host of different people, especially with the schedules of the celebrities I was interested in painting. My current show was all about the human form, a series of paintings of both men and women in just their underwear. At first I’d ran into problems because it had been done so many times before, I didn’t want to copy anyone or anything so I’d decided to spice things up a little by giving the main paintings a homo-erotic feel.

The guys clearly thought  I was gay, and the girls obviously thought I was a pervert but I didn’t mind, I was paying them to pose, not to think. The paintings came out great in the end, at lease Celeste thought they’d do well.

Ah Celeste, after she’d kissed me on the night of the show she’d just walked off as if it was the most normal thing in the world, I wish! I didn’t know what she was doing, if it was just some kind of game rolling around in her posh English head or if she was actually interested in me (which I sure as hell hoped!) but I didn’t care as long as I got to make out with her again. Ah, that kiss…

The show came around faster than I expected, before I knew it muscle men in tighty whiteys and svelte girls in their panties weren’t hanging around my studio any more, the paintings were all set up, and Celeste was popping in to sort out the lighting and last minute details in between endless calls to her party planner. I was excited to see my family at the show, Celeste owned a gallery right on Grand Street in the centre of town, the Veloria Gallery, which had a studio and living space above it, so I’d been staying there. It was easier to ask my models to get to Grand Street than trek up into the country so I could draw them at home, besides I didn’t think mom and dad would have appreciated a bunch of guys and girls making out for hours on end in the sunroom while I painted them.

People were definitely shocked when they walked in the door. Not exactly by the homosexual nature of the paintings, this was the art crowd after all, more that it was a 16 year old who had painted them. I didn’t care about things like that, sex wasn’t something that made me squeam or get embarrassed or anything, I don’t really know why, maybe it was because I’d been looking at nudes from a young age, ever since I was interested in art, but whatever.

“My son! I’m so proud of you!” Mom gushed as I went over to talk to her. She had let me stay at the Veloria gallery for the past few weeks without any problems at all, I thought she might have tried to keep me at home, as I was still in school and stuff, but she’d just mumbled somethings about ‘her at my age..’ and walked off, whatever that was supposed to mean.

“Now I know I don’t know that much about art, but I do know these are amazing son. I really love them.” She looked around the room, taking in all the work before she looked at me once more, smiling broadly. I was so happy that she liked it, it was fantastic to see her up and about after the awful ordeal with the cancer. You wouldn’t have even known she was wearing a wig while she grew her hair back.

“Thanks mom, I’m glad you like them. Is dad coming?” I looked around nervously for Noah, he was definitely happy that I was out making something of myself but he would probably have been a bit put off that his son was drawing men making out with each other.

“He said he’d try to stop by later. Listen,” she leaned in close to me, “do we need to have a conversation about your sexuality?” I couldn’t tell if she was joking or not, was she being serious?!

“Mom!” I shouted back at her, outraged. How could she even ask? “Don’t you think I would have told you?!” I couldn’t care less that she was asking if I was gay, it was the fact that she thought I’d keep something so big from her!

“Okay, okay, sorry!” She said, throwing her hands up.

After pecking mom on the cheek I went around and said hi to everyone, I had to make sure my presence was noticeable, Celeste said buyers loved it if the artist came and spoke to them, it wasn’t as if it was any trouble, so why not. Heading into the second, much smaller room with a few more pieces in I came face to face with Ingrid. I hadn’t seen her since the last opening, although I had gotten a call from her secretary, a Miss Suzie Sandor who invited me to an upcoming gala being hosted at her Grand Circle mansion.

“Well, well. Mr Belgravia himself. I’d take my hat off to you if I ever wore one.” Ingrid smiled at me, waving her arm around the room to indicate the art. “Who are these fabulously beautiful models? It’s a wonder bodies like these even exist.”

“That’s the first one I got, James.” I told her, pointing to him on  a painting of all of the five models I used for the show. “He basically hooked me up with the rest.”

“And then you hooked them up with each other.” She joked, her hand resting on my arm for a few seconds. Looking into her face I was captivated. She wasn’t the most beautiful woman I’d seen, but there was just something about her…

“Do you think anyone will be joining us in this room?” She was definitely flirting with me.

“I dunno. I hope not.” I was trying to make it clear that I wanted to be in here with her, this was so surreal.

I’d had a poster of this woman on my wall just a few years ago, now she was flirting with me!!

“Who’s that one? With the grey hair.” She nodded back to the painting.

“Andreas.” I didn’t have to look at the painting, I knew the models by heart, my eyes never left hers. I didn’t know if it was the confidence I was feeling from everyone praising me all night, or the adrenaline rush of being so close to Ingrid Cale but I felt myself moving closer and closer to her, she stooped a little to be at my level, I didn’t feel emasculated or anything, who would if Ingrid Cale was stooping down to kiss them?! For a second I thought about Celeste, what would she think? But how could I resist a star of the silver screen?

*      *      *

Kitty

The sense of elation I felt as I walked out of the journalism workshop was one I hadn’t felt for a long time. I hadn’t realised how behind I’d gotten on current affairs, how sloppy my writing had became, or, most importantly, just how much I missed writing. I’d finally caved and called grandfather, after all, what were family for if not to help each other? He’d gotten me onto the best course in the city within an hour of my call, and the next day I was there! I’d been hoping for some hot guys in the class, but they were total duds. Oh well, the writing was enough to occupy me anyway. I felt like I could do anything, thinking about the Nature vs Nurture debate we’d just had, thinking how the teacher had praised my work, it had been such a good day! I was so busy thinking about the class that I never noticed the loose curb…

Hitting the pavement hard I had the wind knocked out of me, ouch! I hadn’t taken such a bad fall in quite a while, thank God my spine wasn’t broken or something, jesus. I was definitely complaining to the local council about this one. Sitting up and nursing my head I got another shock, a total stranger leaning down right in front of me! He looked concerned, and was offering his hand.

“You okay there? Do you need me to take you to the hospital or anything?” He asked as he pulled me up. I was so embarrassed!

“Oh no, no, I’m fine, just silly old me, too wrapped up in my own little world to notice a god damn paving stone.” I laughed half heatedly, I really didn’t feel like talking, I just wanted to get home.

“You sure there’s nothing I can do?”

“Completely. Thanks for your help.” It was then that I really looked at him, he was actually really cute, and he was kind to boot! I had to take my chance now while I had it. “Um, I don’t know if you’re into it or anything but my brother Oliver is having an art show soon all these different portraits he’s done, I wondered if you’d like to come… you know, as a thank you.” I rung my hands nervously, it wasn’t often I was nervous about boys, but I wanted this guy not to think of me as a total freak.

He tilted his head to the side, smiling slightly. Damn I wished I had mind reading powers, I hated not knowing what he was going to say! It felt like hours before he smiled at me and nodded his head.

“I’d love to come, thanks…?”

“Kitty.” I smiled back, did I just pick up a guy on the street? Go me!

“Cool. I’m Laurence.” Laurence, hmm, the name didn’t really seem to fit the whole persona he had going on with the scruffy hair, denim jacket and converse, but whatever. After all, what kind of a name was Kitty?!

“Um, here, call me and I’ll tell you all about it.” I quickly scrawled my note on a scrap of paper from class and thrust it into his hand, and with that I ran off  to my car, smiling to myself all the way home.

*     *     *

Olive

For a second I didn’t know where I was, then I remembered, Riley’s bed. I’d just lost my virginity, kind of a big deal I guess, but at least it wasn’t hanging on my shoulders any more. Moving to the window I looked out over the dark ocean.

What was I doing? I should just go home, where I was meant to be, I didn’t belong here. But I didn’t belong at home either, everyone was so perfect apart from me, the wreck of the family. They’d be better off without me.

“Morning honey bun!” Reena squealed from the terrace as I moved out into the bright morning sun after a few hours in my own bed. When I wasn’t drunk I realised how annoying she was, ugh.

“Morning.” I replied, sitting down and playing with my hair, I didn’t really know what to do with myself, hopefully there was some drink in the house.

“How was last night? Was Riley just amazing?! I think about having sex with him myself sometimes, but like, he’s my cousin! Like, ew?!”

“Uh, yeah, it was great!” I threw her a big smile, to be honest it wasn’t all that. I was uncomfortable with it, and it hurt a lot, but at least my stupid virginity was gone, I guess it made me a real woman. I sat staring at the ocean for a few more minutes, jeez it made me feel small. Looking over at Reena I noticed a strange look on her face as she stared at me, what the hell was she doing?

“What?!” I snapped after a few minutes.

“Babes, calm down! It must be your icky black hair that’s making you so angry. You totes need a Miami makeover, oh em gee! Isn’t that the best idea ever?!”

“You think I need a makeover?!” I accused angrily. Was she saying I looked bad or something, at least I wasn’t a walking barbie!

“Oh hun calm down, I know what I’m doing. Trust me.” Before I could object she’d grabbed my arm and was leading me through the endless glass house down to ‘the makeover room’ as she called it. Standing in front of the full length mirror I thought I looked fine, why should I change?

“Sweetie you’re more goth glam!” Goth?! I wasn’t a goth at all, just because I had black hair?! “You need to lighten the hair a bit, get some color on your cheeks, and a cute dress! Listen put this on,” She handed me a hot pink blindfold, “I swear I won’t go far! You’ll really fit in more with the Miami vibe.” She gave me her famous puppy dog eyes, well why not? If she wasn’t gonna go over the top I might as well let her make me look a little more Miami.

Stepping down once she was done a few hours later I didn’t know what she would have done, hopefully I’d just look a little more ‘fun’. We made our way back to the terrace where Carlie was waiting for us, she still wouldn’t let me look in the mirror though!

“Where the hell have you guys been I wanna go- OH MY GOD! You look so different Olive, I swear you don’t even look like the same person!” Um, was that good?! What had she done?

“Isn’t it sooo fun?!” Reena gushed, fixing my hair at the back, I still hadn’t seen it! I quickly ran into the house and looked in the bathroom mirror. Was that me? I looked completely different!

“WHAT THE HELL HAVE YOU DONE?!” I screamed, marching back onto the terrace in a fury.

“Hun just calm down, you look totally hot. Goth chic’s out sweetie, you wanna be glam, right?” I was about to scream at her again when I realised there was nothing I could do. I could go back to my original look but what was the point? I might as well give this ‘Miami look’ a try, maybe they were right, maybe I really did look better.

“So cute.” Carlie agreed as Reena linked her arm through mine.

“So girls, we ready to hit the clubs?” Carlie asked, pouring herself a shot and downing it.

“Clubs? Can we get in?” I asked nervously, if I was drunk I wouldn’t have thought twice about it, but I’d been in that stupid makeover room all day, I felt like I was going crazy.

“Of course!” Carlie and Reena both laughed at my obvious naivety. “In this town all you gotta do is look hot, flirt with the bouncer and you’re in. Lets have a dance before we go!” Reena ran and switched the music on while I quickly went to the bar and had a few mouthfuls of vodka. Much better.

We danced on the terrace for a few hours, I loved dancing, I just felt so free! I must admit the new look was making me feel a little more confident, I felt like I fitted in with the others more, who needed family when I had friends like this? It was as if Reena actually cared about me, wow, I loved them so much! The club we ended up going to was apparantly the best in the city, ‘only the best for us!’ Carlie had shouted as we rode up in the elevator, I must admit I didn’t think we’d get in, but after a lot of drinks I was feeling pretty sure of myself, and a quick flirt with the burly bouncer got us straight in.

“Don’t look now girls but we’re totally getting the eye.” Carlie commented as she enjoyed her Bubblegum Bubbles. The eye?

“Of course we are. Where are they?” Reena flicked her long blonde hair and looked around the club, quickly spotting the three guys across from us, smiling and nodding appreciatively.

“Um, they’re total duds. Why are there no hot guys here?” I asked the girls, I wanted to find someone cute to have fun with, not those idiots who only looked about our age. I’d had Riley now, I was worth more than that.

“Can’t you see the guy on the left?” I looked over at the foreign looking guy with the shaved head, um- ew much?

“What about him? He’s ugly.” I said.

“Who cares about his looks, he’s worth like 400 million, I met him last summer.” Reena said, seeming very interested.

“Sorry Reena babes, you know moms cut me off. He’s gotta be for me.” Carlie stood up, and smoothing down her tight leather dress sashayed across the room to where the boys were stood. Me and Reena followed a strategic 5 minutes later.

After a few minutes of shouting to each other over the pumping music we ended up downstairs on the dance floor. I got the best out of a bad bunch, I didn’t know his name, but he was a decent dancer so whatever. He definitely liked me, I knew that much. He kept putting his arms around my neck, which I’d strategically wiggle out of by pretending to be dancing, like I was better than him, I deserved someone better. At least I didn’t get Reenas guy, who I could see eyeing her up and down, a mini Barbie in her pink playsuit, impossibly long blonde hair and hot pink lipstick. He even grabbed her boob at one point!

I noticed Carlie was busy ensnaring her guy, they were over in a quieter part of the club, and I could see her hand grazing his crotch from time to time, I suppose a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do. Her mom was cutting her off, I mean I don’t have a clue what I’d do without money. Thank god mom didn’t lock my account when I ran off.

I guess the night was a success, we got guys, we had drinks, and we had fun. I just wished I’d met a better guy. Rolling out of the club at 3AM we were quickly picked up by the police, when we couldn’t give them any ID it was straight into the back of a cop car, for a second I was nervous but I just ended up laughing about it, after all what would they do to Lily Belgravia’s granddaughter?

*     *     *

Part 2 – the final installment of this generation – should be up tomorrow.

Also the family tree has been updated with Oriana and Alexandra’s families; can you believe that Lily is now a great-grandmother?! 

– Marissa x

Generation 2 – Chapter 15

TWO YEARS LATER…

Celeste walked around the gallery making sure everything was perfect, she wanted Oliver’s show to be amazing and it wouldn’t do to have a broken light or an off centre picture.

She was a little weary that he had chosen so many paintings of her to be in the show, but she had to admit that they were amazing pieces of art; and she did look exceptional in them. She wasn’t aware that when she met Oliver 2 years ago at the National Park that he would have turned out to be her best discovery yet. The paintings were incredible, there were at least a few Masterpieces in this gallery and even more Brilliant paintings. The Redcliffe Review had declared one of his paintings, showing his brother Tommy, as his first ‘Masterpiece’. She still smiled when she remembered telling him the amazing news, Oliver had been trying and trying to get recognition for his work but he couldn’t do it alone. Luckily Celeste Clarence-Veloria had connections in all the right places, and quickly the Belgravia house was being visited by some of the cities most powerful people, all willing to pay exorbitant prices for his art.

Extracting her phone Celeste dialed the number of her party planner, she had told her to have the champagne here by 7, it was now 7.15 and there was no champagne in sight. Celeste was a stickler for timing, except when it came to herself.

“Cara darling, would you mind telling me why the champagne isn’t here?” Her voice was icy, her eyes slits of disproval as she listened to the party planners excuses. “Cara I don’t have time for this. I pay you for a service, I expect that service to be completed, get the champagne here now or I’ll make sure you never work in this town again.”

She knew she was harsh, but that was, in her opinion, the only way to keep people in check. They had to realise that there would be consequences if they didn’t do as they were told, her father had taught her that many years ago. The scene was all set, all it needed now was the elite of society to fill the room, and hopefully make both her and Oliver a lot of money, not that either of them needed it.

*    *    *

Cora ran through the house laughing joyously, she loved playing games and having fun, and was encouraged to do just that by her mother and father. Delving into her dressing up box she looked for the perfect outfit for todays game, even though she didn’t have anyone to play with at the moment she still had as much fun as she could, she was by no means a loner, but her own company didn’t bother her.

“Gather round and listen to me, for I am your ruler!” She shouted, stood atop a chair in the dining room pretending to address her loyal followers.

“To the treetop castle we go!” Jumping from the chair with a huge bang she ran as fast as she could through the kitchen, out of the back door and into the play area. Climbing up into the tree house that had been passed down through all of the family children she wondered what to do next.

“Cora! Come on we’re ordering dinner, get down!” Kitty shouted from beneath the tree house.

“Wait! Kitty, stay there!” A smile spread across Cora’s face as she moved to the corner of the room where she always kept a few things to play tricks on her brothers and sisters.

“What is it Cora, come on I’m starving!” Kitty tapped her heels on the floor, waiting for Cora to come down the slide, she wasn’t looking where she should have been.

“Cora!” Kitty screamed up to the tree house, wringing out her hair as she stormed off into the house, leaving Cora howling with laughter.

*    *    *

“I’m so glad you’re here, it’s been too long since I saw you.” Tommy told Jennifer as they settled down on the sofa in Tommy’s room.

The two had been inseparable since they met in the hospital two years ago, on the night of the ordeal with Arielle. Jennifer had really helped him through the entire process, comforting him when he couldn’t deal with his mothers illness, going with him to the support sessions and telling him all about her own experiences with her mothers cancer. Once the amazing news that Arielle was in remission had came through a few months ago Tommy had finally asked her to go steady with him, he had wanted to do it for months but he was with Arielle a lot of the time, just talking to her and spending time with her, he didn’t want to leave Jennifer feeling like a spare part, but now he could give her his full attention.

Neither of them were really paying attention to the movie Tommy had thrown on when she had first arrived, they were more interested in giving each other the full attention they hadn’t been able to give before.

Although Tommy was liking Jennifer more and more, and she was his girlfriend, he couldn’t shake the memories of Austin from his mind, and he didn’t really want to. He was starting to realise that it didn’t matter if it was boys or girls that society said you were supposed to be attracted to, you could kiss anyone you wanted, it wasn’t about their sex, it was just about your feelings. Tommy could feel Jennifers hand on his thigh, and felt his face flush as he stirred down below. He didn’t know how far Jennifer wanted to go, he knew she wasn’t a virgin, but he was.

“Do you want to do it Tommy?” She whispered into his ear.

“I – um-…” Tommy stuttered, lost for words. Of course he wanted to have sex with Jennifer, he was a man wasn’t he?! He knew his virginity was supposed to be special, and he couldn’t think of anyone more special to him than Jennifer. The two teenagers moved to the bed, cautiously exploring each others bodies before disappearing under the sheets.

Afterwards they laid in each others arms, totally relaxed and comfortable with one another.

*    *    *

Kitty was bored. During Arielles cancer she had dropped out of most of her after school activities, and had not pursued the internship in journalism in order to be there for her mother. Now that school had broken for summer she had nothing to do with herself all day, so used to being incredibly academically busy before her mothers cancer, and being incredibly busy taking care of Arielle during the cancer, now she was stuck. Roaming the house looking for something to do she decided to go and see her brother, maybe he’d want to go to a movie or something. She never had learnt to knock.

She was shocked when she saw what was going on in the room. Tommy and Jennifer making out wouldn’t have been that shocking, but on the bed in their underwear! Sex was clearly on the agenda for them, she was so embarrassed that she ran out as fast as she could, knocking over a huge pile of DVD’s on her way.

“Kitty! Hey, Kitty!” she could hear Tommy shouting from the bedroom, she wished she had just knocked! Walking as fast as possible down the hallway she hoped Tommy wouldn’t follow her.

“Kitty wait!” She turned on her heel and faced him, both of their faces blushing with embarrassment.

“I’m sorry, I’m sorry!” She said, throwing her hands in the air.

“It’s fine, just knock next time okay? And don’t tell anyone.” Tommy wasn’t sure how his parents felt about sex, after all he was getting old now, most of the people he knew had lost their virginity so it couldn’t be that shocking to them, but it wasn’t really the sort of thing you sat and discussed with your parents.

“Of course I won’t.” Kitty squirmed awkwardly as she spoke. She wasn’t that disturbed by her brother stood in front of her in his underwear, more the fact that she herself was still a virgin. She had wanted it to be special, and Jake just hadn’t been that person. Their relationship had been put under a lot of strain because of her mothers illness, and the two of them had broken up a year ago.

“Go and, I guess enjoy yourself.” Kitty laughed, pushing him back towards the bedroom. She still remembered how angry he was on the night of the party, before everything happened. She knew there was something behind it, probably to do with a girl (or so she thought) but she was glad he’d found Jennifer and seemingly gotten over it all. She just wished she had someone of her own, she was lonely, especially without Olive.

*     *     *

“Come on you pussy down it! I can drink more vodka than you!” Olive laughed as she stood on the terrace of her friend Reena’s parents beach house in Miami, a glass of pure vodka in her hand.

“No way! I can definitely drink more than a girl.” Marc, one of Reena’s Miami friends shouted back, throwing back the vodka in one swift gulp, causing him to choke and splutter as everyone laughed.

“Can you?” She looked around at her friends before she also threw her vodka back, standing perfectly composed.

The vodka barely affected her, she had drank so much of it over the past 2 years that she couldn’t get through the day without a few glasses. She always carried a silver hip flask in her bag, using it to spike her coffee or pouring it into a glass and pretending it was water. Arielle’s cancer had hit her worst out of everyone, she just wasn’t able to think positively, and had turned to alcohol to get rid of the thoughts of her mother dying that had consumed her daily. Her bulimia had escalated to the point where she was making herself sick after a single mouthful of food, and although Kitty had tried to help her, Olive just wouldn’t listen.

“Lets dance!” Reena shouted, dragging people over the dance floor on the corner of the terrace, Olive loved being around these people, they didn’t care what she did, drinking vodka daily and making yourself sick was just a normal occurrence to them, cocaine was also a daily habit, although Olive hadn’t joined in that one yet.

“Come on Olive, do that dance with me!” Reena screamed over the music, her high pitched girly voice ringing over the ocean. Olive hardly knew the girl, she had been in a few of her classes at school and had a reputation as something of a party girl, so one day Olive had just started talking to her. As long as Olive drank like a fish, smoked like a chimney and was as skinny as she could possibly be her and Reena got  on perfectly, hence the invite to Reena’s step-fathers Miami beach house for the summer.

“What the hell are you guys doing?! Turn the music down!” Reena’s cousin Riley shouted as he emerged onto the terrace. He was staying with them at the house, supposedly ‘keeping them in check’, little did the parents know Riley threw more parties than Reena did, and did a lot harder drugs.

“Oh no, no, no, no, Ri-leeey! Please let us keep it on.” Reena mock-begged, sticking out her bottom lip and giving him her infamous puppy dog eyes.

“Hmm…” He mused, staring at his cousins friends on the dance floor. He had never really paid them much attention over the few weeks they had been here, he was too busy with his string of girlfriends. But he was bored and horny… “I’ll let you keep your crap little party going if you do something for me.” He leaned over and whispered into Reenas ear.

Standing on the corner of the deck overlooking the ocean Olive yearned for home, this wasn’t her place, not really. But she knew she couldn’t go back. She had caused to much trouble to just go back with her tail between her legs, she was too proud to admit that she had been a wreck for the past two years, she simply couldn’t cave so easily.

“Hey Olive. Thought I’d come see ya’.” Riley said, flexing his muscles and leaning against the stereo.

“Yeah cool, haven’t spoke to you much while we’ve been here.” Olive replied, checking him out. He was definitely attractive in a very brash, muscled, beach boy kind of way.

“C’mere.” He grabbed her shoulder, pulling him close to her and began whispering into her ear. “My cus’ told me you’re down for a bit of fun.” Olive looked at him with a confused expression on her face, her experience with men was exactly none. “You know, you help me out, I help you out, that kinda’ thing.”

“What the hell! No way, I don’t even know you!” She shouted back.

“Woah, woah! My cousin said you were cool, what’s the big problem?!”

She couldn’t believe what he was asking her, he had only met her a few weeks ago and he wanted them to have sex! Moving away from him and standing over at the edge of the terrace with her vodka she mused about her love life, no one had ever shown any attention to her, sure guys had wolf whistled at her in the street but every girl got that from time to time, maybe she should go with Riley, just to get it out of the way, she’d only need a little more vodka. She downed the glass.

“Olive! I can’t believe you! Riley’s gonna shut of the music, just because you won’t have sex with him!!” Reena shouted, her eyes emitting rays of anger.

“I’m not having sex with your cousin, I don’t even know him.” Olive replied blankly, staring straight through Reena.

“Why not?! He’s obviously great in bed, he must have had sex with like 30 girls in the two weeks we’ve been here, it’ll be fun, stop being so boring!” The words boring snapped Olive out of her daze, boring was one thing she always prided herself on not being. She may not have been the smartest or the prettiest girl, but she certainly wasn’t boring. Looking down at the floor she thought for a few seconds.

“I’ll do it, should be fun.” She faked a smile at her ‘friend’, looking around for Riley.

“I knew you’d come around! I told him you’d do it, so he’s gone to wait in the bedroom. Enjoy it sweetie, oh can you pass me my bag?” Olive leaned over and passed the hot pink clutch to Reena, who proceeded to fish out a small bag of white powder, which she laid out on the table and snorted with a rolled up hundred. It didn’t faze Olive, she was used to it. Heading up to the master bedroom where Riley she stayed she didn’t feel nervous at all, a little excited maybe, but really she just felt numb. She had been drinking none stop since she woke up, drink didn’t give her that elated sense of joy it gave so many people, it just made her unthinking, as if her sense was snatched away from her.

“Hey kido. Glad you came.” Riley watched from his position on the side of the blank white bed as she sashayed across the room in her spangled swimsuit.

*    *    *

“You can do this..” Oliver muttered to himself as he adjusted his shirt and checked himself out in front of the bathroom mirror. Tonight was his first show, and although he usually favored jeans and an old t shirt he wanted to look respectable for tonight, after all the photos would probably be on page six.

The party was the only social event going on. Well, the only one worth going to. It was an amalgamation of the Redcliffe glitterati, who had turned out in force to support who was soon to become one of their own. The star power was brought by Oliver’s grandmother Lily, the famous movie star, as well as a host of other actors and actresses, models, journalists, musicians, and business moguls who would pay exorbitant prices for a good piece of art. Oriana, Oliver’s aunt, was there with her rock star boyfriend Jasper (still going – well, is strong really the word for those two?) as well as his other aunt Alexandra, the international best selling author.

“The work is so great, I’ll definitely be buying a few pieces for the new studio Jasper and I are building in our backyard.” Oriana slurred, already drunk before she arrived. Oliver had never had much of a relationship with her, but he thanked her nonetheless.

“Isn’t it just divine?” Celeste’s clipped English voice could be heard shmoozing clients from the back of the gallery, where she basked in the attention that she was getting; people turned to stare at her once they noticed the woman in a lot of the paintings was among them. She was currently persuading a first time buyer to purchase, her specialty. “A Belgravia piece will just go so well in any setting, wonderful for a hallway or a dining room to really make a statement, you know sweetie,” she leaned in and whispered, “this is the young mans first show, and as you can see by all the red stickers around here he is very popular.” She stood up straight once more, her voice rising, “Why I imagine his paintings will be selling for ten times the amount I’m selling them for now in ten years!”

“There he is over there, isn’t he just a darling?” She pointed behind her to where Oliver was stood, still in conversation with Oriana.

“Is that Oriana Belgravia he’s talking to? She was on the cover of Rolling Stone a few weeks ago with Jasper.” The woman said, clearly impressed. Celeste knew she’d got her.

“Oh yes, his aunt you know. This family has a lot of star power.” Celeste had learnt long ago that for the majority of the people willing to spend thousands, or even millions on a piece of art the artist was as every bit important as the work itself. Coming from a family like the Belgravia’s Oliver had a massive amount of star power, she knew that people would be interested in the art just because of the name he had been born into.

“I can’t  believe he did a painting of me!” Tommy was shouting from behind the partition in the middle of the room, staring at the painting of himself up on the wall, which had already been marked with a red sticker to show it had been sold, probably due to the glowing review it was given in The Redcliffe Review. “And who the hell bought it? Why would someone want a painting of me on their wall?!”

“Because it’s a good painting man!” Oliver said as he came around the corner. Tommy smiled at his brother, he was insanely flattered that his brother had painted him, never mind put him in the gallery. The two brothers hugged and stared at the painting, Tommy trying his hardest to look like he was interested. They caught each others eye and burst out laughing.

“My grandson!” Lily boomed, embraced Oliver in a light hug. “I simply love the work, it’s incredible, I’m so proud of you.” Lily was genuinely impressed, she was glad her grandson had some talent, she would have hated to see him end up like a lot of other rich, off the rails children.

“I must ask though, who is the woman in all of the paintings? I heard people saying she’s here tonight. I have to say she looks a little old for you.”

“Grandma!” Oliver laughed, he couldn’t think of his grandmother in a sexual scene, he preferred to believe she had never had sex in her life. “It’s my agent, she’s the one who made all this happen, and I just love painting her.” He smiled at his grandmother. It was true, apart from the part about being completely infatuated with Celeste being missed out.

“Well as long as she makes you happy, that’s what I always say.” Lily replied, thinking to herself that it was her who had made all of this happen, half the people here wouldn’t have turned up if rumors of her attendance hadn’t ‘leaked’ onto the internet, no doubt spread by Celeste. ‘I must get my Private Investigator onto her…” She mused as she walked off to chat with the co-star in her latest blockbuster.

“Am I brilliant or am I brilliant?” Celeste beamed as she quickly walked across the room to Oliver. “I just sold Starburst for three times it’s worth, people are willing to pay anything for these!”

“That’s great, I hope it doesn’t cause problems but I gave two of these to aunt Alex, so I marked them.” His aunt had expressed an interest in buying the paintings, but he never saw her, and knew she had a growing brood to support, with Celestes insane prices she might have left with nothing, besides, it took nothing for him to paint, it was easy. Celeste pressed her fingers to her temple to stop herself yelling in the middle of the packed room.

Slowly opening her eyes she spoke in an unnaturally even manner, her eyes never leaving Olivers.

“Are you being serious? That’s the most stupid thing I’ve ever heard, I could have made thousands off two paintings, and you’re just giving them away?”

“Hey it’s no big deal, it’s not like I care about the money, I just want some recognition for my work.”

“You don’t care about the money? Well you bloody well should because that’s what the recognition is. The more a painting is worth the more recognition it gets. We can steadily rise your prices with each show, but giving them away isn’t doing you any favors.” If there was one thing Celeste knew it was art, she needed Oliver to listen to her if their working relationship was going to work.

“Fine, it’s no biggie. I’ll paint two more and you can sell them privately.”

Celeste leaned back, glaring at Oliver. He was her best client, but his laid back attitude really got to her sometimes. She knew she couldn’t win this one, and it annoyed her. She was a woman who always won. But she had to give in before they caused a scene.

“Fine. Ingrid Cale is in the other room, she wants to speak with you.” and with that she turned on her heel and stalked out of the room.

Ingrid Cale was one of Olivers favourite actresses. He never really got star struck, having a famous actress for a grandmother you got used to seeing famous people daily, but Ingrid Cale was better than any of them, she was basically the Lily Belgravia of her generation, and for her to want to talk to him was amazing.

“Ah! Oliver! I have been wanting to speak  with you all night, the art is fabulous darling, simply fabulous! And for one so young it is fantastic! I’ve already bought three pieces. You must come to my next party you know, I’ll make sure Suzie puts you on the list. Come, let us smile for this photographer!” She  put her arm around his waist, smile fixed firmly in place as she stared at the camera in front of her. Oliver managed to smile just in time.

“I- wow, thank you, it’s amazing to hear you say that. I love your movies by the way.” He didn’t care if he sounded like a dumb star struck fan, he had to tell her how much he loved her work.

“Ah thank you! Now where is that waiter with the champagne, have you had much dear?” She craned her neck looking for the waiter, before her eyes rested on Olivers face, and she peered at him intently.

“You are old enough for champagne aren’t you? You’re what… 19?” She was a woman renowned for being able to guess an age perfectly, but Oliver stumped her. He looked youthful, yet there was an attractiveness and a confidence there she usually associated with older men, he was also a great talent, which she rarely saw in those younger than 18.

“I’m old enough, besides it’s my party.” Oliver replied slyly, grabbing two glasses from the waiter and handing one to Ingrid, letting his fingers rest on hers for a moment.

“My, my, aren’t you something. Definitely coming to one of my parties.” She narrowed her eyes and smiled at him coyly, she always did like them young.

“Amazing turn out wasn’t it?” Celeste said as she roamed up and down the gallery with Oliver. The party had wound down about an hour ago, the trail of limousines had looked like the Presidential cavalcade as they wound their way through the country lanes back into the centre of the city, many with a Belgravia piece wrapped tightly in the back.

“It was amazing, thanks Celeste.”

“Oh it’s no problem darling. Of course I’ll work out my commission, but that isn’t important right now.” Celeste needed Oliver. Although her place in the tabloids and her standing as one of the reat socialittes of Redcliffe was firmly in place her career as an art dealer was on the down. Unknown artists didn’t sell anymore. Oliver himself may have been unknown, but the Belgravia name was renowned world wide, and as such sold buckets worth of art. She wanted to show her appreciation for him in the best way she knew. Before Oliver could react she’d grabbed him around the waist, turning him towards her and looked into his eyes for only a second before she plunged her crimson lips onto his. He didn’t resist, she knew he wouldn’t. Just a second before she had kissed him Oliver thought he saw her face soften, her steely glare turn into one of kindness, or joy, but he lost it as he immersed himself in the kiss, his first kiss to be precise. He had gotten complete recognition for his art and his first kiss with a woman so far out of his league he thought she might be gone in an instant. All in all a a very successful night for Oliver.

*    *    *

Sorry if anyone is a little dissapointed that I sort of skipped over the whole cancer situation, I really wanted to do it justice, and I think I kind of rushed into the storyline without thinking about how I would do it properly. We’re on chapter 15 now (can you believe it!?) and I really wanted to give the kids my full focus. Also being an issue that is so close to my heart (and many others) I just felt it would be easier to move on with the story, and get back into happier times – I hope everyone’s okay with that!

What do you think of the new characters? Any ideas for how the story should proceed, I love to know what you think!

– Marissa x

Generation 2 – Chapter 14

Tommy –

How could she have done this?! I couldn’t believe mom hadn’t told us she had cancer! Noah had quickly filled us all in as he raced the Range Rover down the twisting streets behind the blaring lights of the ambulance. It was definitely not the way any of us had wanted to find out, and Noah had seemed completely uncomfortable telling us so hastily, especially with all of us completely shaken up, and Olive’s constant sobs didn’t help at all. I paced up and down as we waited for mom to come out of surgery, I couldn’t even consider sleep like Kitty, Olive and Oliver had.

I continued pacing, mumbling under my breath and kicking the walls, she had to be okay! What if the doctor came out and said she hadn’t made it, no! I couldn’t think like that.

“Hey, you okay?” At first I considered not answering, but I needed something to distract me. “Sit down?” She asked kindly, she was looking up at me, full of concern.

“Who are you waiting for?” She asked as I sat down warily beside her. I didn’t know why, but I felt like I could talk to her.

“Uh – my mom, she’s in surgery.”

“That sucks. I hope she pulls through.” The conversation was clearly going to be a little awkward from the get go, but we kept talking.

“I just hope she can make it, I mean, I dunno what I’d do without her, I can’t even think of anything different than having my mom around.” She listened patiently as I told her the story of the night, the party, my moms announcement, her collapse, everything.

“I know how you feel, honestly. My moms here for her chemotherapy right now, I have to wait out here till she’s done though. They won’t let me into the room.” Her mom had cancer too?! No wonder I felt like I could relate to her.

“What’s it like? The chemo?”

“I’m not gonna lie, it’s hard on her. She vomits, she’s always tired, her hair fell out long ago, but it’ll all be worth it when she pulls through.” I took note of her use of when she pulls through instead of if she pulls through. That’s how I should be thinking. Mom will pull through!

“Thanks so much for talking to me, you really calmed me down.”

“Yeah, you seemed pretty upset – understandably. I’m glad I could help.” This girl was so great.

Kitty –

I didn’t know how long I had been asleep, me, Olive, and Oliver had all dropped off as soon as we sat down, we were all worried but we just couldn’t stay awake any longer. At least this would pass some time too. Olive was still asleep, her head almost touching my legs. I needed her to wake up so we could talk about everything, not her bullimea, just mom. I needed to talk.

“Kitty, you okay?” Oliver had woken up.

“Um – no, not really no.”

“Wanna go for a walk?” He was so kind, but I couldn’t go for a walk, mom could be out of surgery any second.

“Come on, I just spoke to the nurse, she said mom won’t be out of surgery for at least another hour, we should get something to eat.” He didn’t give me time to tell him no, grabbing my hand and leading me down the hallway, out into the night. We walked for a while in silence, across the street, down to the boardwalk. It was so beautiful here, it was unimaginable that such tragedy was happening at the same time.

“Kitty, you think she’ll be okay?” He asked nervously, staring out to sea. I always forgot how young Oliver was, he had filled out quickly, and combined with his mature, caring nature (at times!) he could probably pass as my age, even though he was barely 14.

“Of course she will be.” I felt a lot less confident than I sounded as I reassured my little brother, I didn’t actually know myself. All I knew was that she had to be, we couldn’t lose her, she was our rock.

“Kitty…” He stared down at the ground, clearly (and understandably) upset, “what if she dies?” the words came out in a choked whisper, I had been thinking them too, but I hadn’t wanted to say them out loud, it all just felt so real. If we didn’t say it she could just be in hospital for a check up, oh damn, I knew I was kidding myself, it was obviously real… I just couldn’t face it. I still hadn’t answered him, I looked down at the ground as he stared at mine, I knew what he wanted, for me to say she wouldn’t die, but now that I’d thought about it I realised it was a very real possibility – she may not even make it out of surgery, and that wasn’t even to do with the cancer!

Olive –

I paced up and down the hallway, my nerves going out of control. I knew mom was okay, they had brought her out of surgery and she was resting with Noah keeping up a bedside vigil. I bit my nails and tapped my feet as I walked past the mostly deserted rooms, I couldn’t go in there. Not on my own, I didn’t want to see mom like this, she couldn’t be ill, it just wasn’t right, she was the heart of the family, who would hold us all together?

I needed my siblings to come back, where the hell where they?! I had woke up to find everyone gone, Tommy, Kitty, Oliver, all of them, all gone. I had not a single idea where they could be, I’d asked dad when he came out to convince me to come in and see mom but he didn’t know either. I just needed someone to talk to, I needed Kitty to be here and convince me to go inside that little room where mom was laying in the bed, with cancer. I stood in the hallway, staring into the room through the glass. She didn’t look ill, just as if she was napping, but I knew she had just had major surgery to remove a blood clot and she was obviously in a bad condition, it was such a frightening thought.

“Olive!” I heard a voice shout to me from down the hallway, it was Tommy! And some girl who I had never seen before in my life. Was Tommy picking up girls at the hospital?!

“Where have you been?!” I was pretty angry with him, mom was in surgery and he was off with some girl, probably looking for a date or something, what an idiot.

“Just to the vending machines downstairs, why aren’t you in there?” He seemed a little upset that he wasn’t in the room, but the girl whispered something into his ear and I noticed him calm down.

“Um -” I knew I had to go in, and now was as good a time as any, “I’m going in now, come on.” He walked ahead of me into the room, I didn’t know if the girl was going to try and follow him in, but I was still going to stop her. “Look sweetie,” I said, spinning around and blocking the door, even though she hadn’t moved yet. “This is a family issue, so why don’t you go somewhere else.” It wasn’t a question and she knew it. Her face set into a hard line of anger, but for whatever reason she just turned on her heel and strutted off down the hallway, whatever.

It wasn’t long until Olive and Kitty came back from wherever they had been – thank God! I knew that Kitty was upset with me right now, but my… issues were nothing compared to this. Our mom could die! Noah told us that they had gotten the clot out, it was lucky that we were throwing a party causing mom not to be wrapped up in bed, or we may never have known anything was wrong until the next morning, and by then it would have been too late. You could have cut the tension in the air with a knife, mom was heavily sedated, resting. Noah had his position next to her, barely speaking to us aside from telling us hard facts, I knew he didn’t dare to hope out loud, after all, she may have gotten through this, but there was still cancer to deal with! We all stood around her bed, an odd sight in our formal clothes from the party, inwardly praying for her survival; I had never been one for God, but now I felt that if He was real I needed Him more than ever.

Arielle –

I was looking down upon myself, it was like an out of body experience, I could see them; my family, my loves, my life, all stood around my bed. The looks on their faces pained me so deeply I thought I may have exploded. Kitty was stoic, staring straight at me, but I could see the fear in her eyes. Olive was outwardly nervous, tapping her Louboutins on the hard tile floor over and over again, picking at her nails and messing with her clothes. Oliver was clearly angry, I knew what he was thinking, this anger at the world was consuming him. Noah, my love, was trying to hold himself together, he was always such a man, never losing control, always proud, but I could see the worry on his face. Tommy was also stoic like his sister Kitty, looking down at the floor with a look of deep sadness on his handsome face.

I needed to wake up from the drug induced sleep, I had to be there for my family but it was impossible. What could I possibly do to comfort them when I was in shreds myself. It sounds selfish but I really didn’t want to die, I wasn’t ready, I hadn’t done everything in my life that I could have. What about poor Cora, still at home with a babysitter, without a care in the world. No doubt she would grow up with problems if she went through life without a mother to be there for her. Noah was a good father but he wasn’t very hands on with the kids, he was working all the time, when he came home he was the stern but cheerful father, the one the kids loved unconditionally. I had to be strong, for their sakes.

Oliver –

Why was no one doing anything?! We were all just stood around like half wits staring at moms sleeping figure. We should have been calling doctors, flying the best specialists in from around the world, anything but this standing around waiting for something to happen! I scowled at the rest of my family, who didn’t notice as they were still too busy staring at mom. I couldn’t be here!

I had to leave, I couldn’t be there anymore. So I ran. I ran straight out of the depressing, unthinkable situation. I could here Noah shouting me as I ran from the room but I didn’t turn around, I ran straight through the twisting blank white hallways of the hospital out into the night, being anywhere else would be better than being in there.

I didn’t know where I was going, there was no destination in my mind, but it had to be somewhere far away. This new town was huge, much bigger than Bridgeport, it felt amazing to be able to run from the built up city center, straight through the quaint suburbs, and out into the country. After a while I realised I was at the city limits, if I just kept running I could leave all of this behind, run to a new city, ignore my moms problems and start over. But I couldn’t. I just needed some peace. Running into the National Park on the edge of the city I wished I had my easel with me, this place was so beautiful. Damn, how could I be thinking of art when my mom was dying?!

A small cluster of benches were inviting me, I had been running for what felt like hours without stopping, I needed to rest, and this seemed like the perfect place. Sat among the nature I tried to clear my head, that’s what people always seemed to do, just get rid of their thoughts for a while, just to calm down. I took deep breaths, in, and out, in, and out. I wished I had a pack of cigarettes right now, I’d tried one at school a few weeks ago after a tough test and it had calmed me right down.

I tried not to think about mom, if I let myself think of the possibilities I wouldn’t be able to stop, I knew I’d end up breaking down, I mean it wasn’t like anyone was around, but I didn’t want to be weak, dad had taught me that men always have to be strong. The silence was so complete that it was a shock when I heard twigs snapping, and a rustling behind the bushes ahead. I stared ahead, ready for some sort of monster to come out of the bushes and eat me, or a tramp to come and mug me, but what came out was even odder.

It was the most unlikely type of person to emerge that I could have imagined, this perfectly manicured woman, an unnatural sight for a National Park, where was her hiking gear? She had noticed me, I knew that. She was walking towards me purposely, I quickly composed myself, it wouldn’t be cool to let her know I was upset, whoever she was.

“Hello! What a shock to see someone else out here so early, or late, depending on what you’ve been up too.” She said in a clipped English accent, extending a manicured hand to me, which I shook wearily. “What are you doing out here?” She asked, staring at me curiously.

“Um- I was just, walking around and I ended up here. If you don’t mind me saying, you don’t seem like, dressed properly for this place.” I smiled weakly at her, I couldn’t really be bothered with a conversation with this woman, but she was intriguing me.

“Well if you don’t mind me saying, neither of us seem to be be dressed appropriately for such a place, but I always find the appropriate way is usually the most tedious. Don’t you agree?” I had completely forgotten I was still in my extremely formal suit from the party. “I was actually at a rather fabulous party at the McLaughlins, if you must know. Now you must tell me where you where. How old are you by the way.” She peered at me as if she couldn’t quite work it out. She was taller than me, and I guessed she was probably somewhere in her late 20’s, I didn’t really know.

“17.” I said quickly, adding 3 years onto my age. She would probably just laugh if she knew I was only 14, I had to quickly move the conversation on. “Do you mean the MacLaughlins as in Mayor MacLaughlin?” I must admit that I was impressed, she clearly knew the high players of the city, I’d wanted to get a meeting with Mayor MacLaughlin for months to ask about getting my art around the city, but I never got past his secretary. I knew if I asked grandpa the Mayor would probably come straight over to the house, but I didn’t want help, I wanted to do it on my own. “I was actually at a party myself, but it got to be kind of a drag.” I didn’t want to tell her about mom , I don’t really think she would want to hear my sob story, she was just being polite.

“It seems like we think alike. I love to come to this park after a good party, it really clears my head. Gives me good ideas for the artists I endorse also.” She looked away from me for a second, at the wonderful scenery around her.

“You endorse artists? I’m an artist.” I blurted out before I could stop myself. I had been looking for someone like this for ages. She turned back to me with a half smile on her lips.

“You are? Well you should show me your work, I love to find up and coming artists.” Before I knew it we were engaged in a conversation about art, debating the best artists, telling each other our favourite works, and generally just having a good conversation. I’d never met someone who knew so much about art, she knew much, much more than I did, she even knew more than my teacher. It was such a great conversation that I found myself not consumed with worry over mom, which in a way I felt guilty about, but on the other hand it was so good to just have a real conversation without the dreaded C word hanging on my every thought.

“Goodness is that the time.” She glanced at her watch and then at the sky, the sun was slowly rising, casting a pink glow over everything in sight, it was beautiful. “I simply must go, a girl has to get her beauty sleep. Take my card.” She slipped a fancy white card into my hand before turning on her heel and heading back to the path, not looking back once. I looked down at the card, Celeste Clarence-Veloria. Maybe this was just the person I had been looking for.

*      *      *

Sorry it’s been so long guys! I know this chapter isn’t great, but I’m just extending some of the story lines and figuring out how to go about the whole cancer business. I hope you enjoy it, hopefully there will be a new chapter very soon. I also wanted to know what you thought of the way the last chapter was wrote. Do you prefer it to be written in the third person or first person? Please tell me, it would really help me out!

– Marissa x

P.S. Doesn’t Oliver look the spitting image of his father?! 

UPDATE

Sorry for the lack of an update lately everyone!

And sorry for my absence on all your blogs – I’m trying to catch up!

My sims game is really acting up – every time I go to edit town my game just crashes, and I have no idea how to fix it! Not all of the members of the family are under the same roof at the moment making it impossible for me to finish the chapter until I can get everyone together! If you have any tips for fixing the game they would be most appreciated. I’ve also just been having a lot of fun in my ‘real’ life lately, and haven’t had that much time for sims legacies! I’ll try and get back on track as soon as possible.

– Marissa xxx

Generation 2 – Chapter 13

The Dinner

“Come on Olive, get off that phone and grab me some rosemary from the spice rack will you” Arielle asked as she prepared the evenings dinner.

“Mom I don’t get why you’re going to all this trouble just for stupid Jake!” Olive whined as she searched trough the various spices and herbs on the opposite counter.

“You’re only saying that because you don’t like salmon and you know it.” Arielle laughed, “Don’t worry, I’ll do you something else for you, but for now help me with this. You know come here, I’ll teach you how to cut it just right.”

“Why, you do it perfectly.” Olive plonked herself down one of the stools, pulling out her laptop and logging onto Facebook.

“Well you need to know how to cut sweetie.” She busied herself with the salmon as she spoke, “you know, for the day when I’m not around any more…” Olive didn’t detect the anguish that flitted across her mothers face.

“Oh mom! I’m not moving out just yet, you’ve got a few more years of me yet. Oh my god! Milly Orkenfor just changed her relationship status from ‘in a relationship’ to ‘it’s complicated’!”

“They have relationship status’ on there?” Arielle asked, still preparing the salmon.

“O.M.G! I have to call her this instant, oh she’s online, I need to find out what happened!” Arielle smiled at her daughter as she typed away furiously, she couldn’t help but think what would happen if the cancer took her life from her, how would her daughter cope without her here to listen to the the snippets of her life that were so important right now?

“Oh Kitty you’re here! And you look lovely by the way.” Arielle smiled at her oldest daughter as she walked into the room, dressed for dinner. She was so proud of everything she was achieving, both in her personal life and her school life. Class president, and now she had a boyfriend! Arielle wondered if her own life would have turned out differently if she had experienced everything her children were experiencing, the childhood memories of sibling rivalry, boyfriends and girlfriends, teenage parties while the parents were away… It didn’t matter, she was extremely grateful for the way she had grown up, after all if it wasn’t for that she may never have been at the club on that fateful night that Noah walked in the door.

“Kitty can you go and put the washer on? I want everything to be done before dinner so I don’t have to do it afterwards.” Arielle asked as she rushed around the kitchen. Kitty smiled and sighed theatrically,

“Ah, if I must!” Trudging off to the pantry/laundry room Kitty tried to keep her nerves at bay. What if her parents didn’t like Jake? She liked him so much, and just wanted everyone else to feel the same. Olive was okay with him, they had talked about it as they laid in Olive’s bed watching The Notebook and eating Ben and Jerrys from the box, she loved having her sister to talk to about the relationship stuff, it’s not like Tommy would have been interested!

“Hey mom!” Oliver yelled as he walked into the kitchen, dumping a stack of easels in the sun room, which had became his domain ever since he started painting there as a child.

“Hi son, how was the art class?” Arielle asked as she poured herself a cup of coffee. She was so proud of her youngest son, he was so unlike his brother, which she loved. All her children were different, and she loved that about them.

“Meh,” he shrugged his shoulders, “it’s okay, the kids in there are total crap though. Today someone painted a house! I swear I painted a similar thing when I was 8.”

“Well not everyone is as good at art as you Oliver, that’s why they’re in the class!” Arielle said.

“I suppose. Can I have a sandwich?” He bounded over to the fridge, about to make his favourite turkey sandwiches.

“No you can’t have a sandwich! We’re having dinner soon. Close the fridge.” Arielle chided from her position on the island. Oliver was still searching the fridge, obviously still about to make his sandwich. “Oliver! Close it.” His mothers warning finally got through, and with a sigh he slammed the fridge door closed. If she was no longer around who would stop Oliver from gauging on his favourite foods? Who would instil the importance of family meals into him? They were slight, and in some ways silly things that she was fretting over, but she couldn’t help think about every aspect of their lives, and all the ways in which they needed her. She looked downwards, her children couldn’t know that she was ill, at least not yet, not with Noah’s big party coming up, and Kitty’s dinner to introduce them to Jake, Tommy’s football game this weekend, Oliver’s art show at the school next Wednesday, the shopping spree Olive had planned for the both of them coming up, and little Cora’s birthday on the horizon.

“Tommy!” Arielle exclaimed as she heard the back door open. “How was practice?” She kissed him on the cheek before she took his dirty gym clothes out of the backpack he had dumped on the floor.

“Fine.” He went and looked over Olive’s shoulder at her laptop.

“What the hell are you doing?” He asked.

“Connor cheated on Milly! But she still wants to be with him!” Olive got into her element, “Okay so I called Stacy who told me that she had seen Connor at the movies with – you’ll never guess who -” She paused for a few seconds as Tommy stood scowling at her “-Mindy! The girl you brought to the party!”

“Tommy brought a girl to that party you guys threw!?” Arielle exclaimed as she washed her now empty coffee mug.

“He totally kissed her too,” Olive continued, “because Stacey wasn’t in the same theatre as them so I called Michelle who works there, and she was doing that thing you know where they come in with the glasses and spy on you, and she was just looking then she got to Connor, and he was kissing Mindy!! Oh my God, biggest news ever right?!”

“Yeah biggest news ever.” Tommy said sarcastically, scowling.

“Come on, it is big news! They were like the perfect couple! Kitty don’t you think that’s big?” Olive asked when she saw Kitty walking out of the laundry room.

“Definitely. I mean, especially seen as she wants to stay with him. What woman would do that to herself? She needs to get some pride and leave him.” Kitty replied as she dried the mug Arielle had just washed.

“I knoooow right! She needs to get a grip! This is so exciting I have to call Clara right now, mom can I?” Olive pleaded.

“No you can’t, dinner will be ready in a few minutes. Tommy will you go get Cora from the den and put her in the high chair?” Arielle asked as she peered through the glass door of the oven to check her salmon.

“No!” Tommy said as he stormed out of the kitchen.”

“Who put a stick up his ass?” Oliver joked.

“Oliver, don’t swear! Although you’re right…” Arielle craned her neck to see if she could see Tommy in any of the rooms that were visible through the large glass doors in the den. “Go get Cora would you Oliver.” She said as she brought the huge plate of salmon out of the oven. She was thankful for Oliver as he came back into the room with Cora on his arm, but she worried about Tommy, maybe was just in one of those moods but what if it was something serious? If she wasn’t here who would he talk to?! None of the children would talk to Noah about their problems, they always came to her. It would be even worse for Tommy, as Noah wasn’t his biological father, and she hadn’t heard from Leo in years.

The whole family was seated for dinner, as well as Jake, who Arielle insisted on seating at the head of the table, which made it even worse for him as everyone could gawk at him freely. Kitty sat next to her father, who was next to Jake, and spent the entire dinner wishing she could swap places with her father, the stern looks he was giving Jake were beginning to make her nervous! Everyone else stayed mainly silent as they ate, it was always polite conversation during the beginning of dinner (and Arielle had sternly told them to be extra polite due to Jakes presence), school work, football, that sort of thing. Olive played with her BlackBerry under the table as she ignored the salad her mother had made for her. Oliver tried to talk to Tommy, who was having none of it, and furiously wolfed down his dinner before he asked to be excused, which Noah stopped with a few stern words about having guests and being polite, which instantly shut Tommy up. Cora was, in Kitty’s opinion, the saviour of the dinner. Every time she felt a little awkward she could talk about how big Cora was getting, or how sweet she was in her high chair, which would always result in huge giggles from Cora, making the entire table smile.

“So Jake, what are you interested in?” Noah asked as he took a sip of water.

“Um – Sports mainly…” Jake smiled lightly, he was understandably nervous, and Noah’s stern gaze wasn’t helping calm those. “Oh and your daughter, very interested in your daughter!” The corners of Noah’s mouth turned up in a half smile as he watched this kid squirm with nerves in front of him.

“Jake, Jake, it’s fine.” Kitty whispered, smiling at Jake as she reached across the table and squeezed his hand whilst Noah complimented Arielle on how wonderful the salmon was.

“Kitty, hows the class presidency going?” Noah turned to his eldest daughter whom he loved so much.

“Great actually, I’ve got a committee together and we’re planning a lot of positive changes around the school, do you know they don’t even recycle!”

“Well neither did we until you practically held mom at knife point until she got a recycle bin!” Oliver said, his mouth full of food.

“You know I think this is just a test run for you – if you know what I mean.” Noah looked proudly upon his daughter, he could definitely see big things for her future.

“I wanna talk to you guys about that actually!” Kitty said excitedly, looking at both her parents. “I’ve decided I’m going to apply for an internship in jounalism! Oh and don’t tell grandpa, I don’t want to get it just because he owns the company.”

“That’s amazing sweetie!” Arielle exclaimed as she smiled at her daughter, she always knew exactly what she wanted to do, so unlike her at the same age. Noah was oddly silent at this point, Kitty looked at him with a confused expression while Arielle tilted her head to the side, willing him to say what was on his mind.

“Well Kitty wouldn’t it be better for you to apply for a political internship at city hall? I thought that’s what you wanted.”

“No, I want to write about politics, not be in it, not yet anyway. Class presidents one thing but I don’t know if I want to do it on a grander scale, writing about it would be more fun, then I wouldn’t have to tread on egg shells like I would if I was a politician.” She had clearly thought over her reasons to apply for a journalism internship, but Noah still didn’t seem happy.

“I just don’t see why you’d want to write about politics when you could be in the middle of it.”

“It’s a snake pit daddy, I don’t want to be in there.”

“It’s not like you couldn’t hold your own though sis.” Olive said, finally looking up from her BlackBerry.

“Yeah Kitty, why aim so low?” Oliver chimed in, still chewing with his mouth full. Kitty turned and glared at him, her lips set in a thin line of disapproval , she didn’t like her family always getting their own views in.

“Olive turn your stupid phone off the beeping’s annoying me!” Tommy shouted from the opposite end of the table.

“Tommy’s got his panties in a twist.” Oliver whispered to Kitty across the table, causing her to burst out in laughter.

“Shut up Oliver!” yelled Tommy, punching Oliver on the arm.

“Woah, woah, what the hell is your problem Tommy?! Did you miss a throw at practice?! Are you on your period or something, God what is your problem today?!” Olive screamed, defending both herself and Oliver.

“Stop it!” Arielle stood up, immediately shutting everyone up. “We have a guest who has came here to get to know us and you kids can do nothing but bicker?!” She glared individually at everyone on the table, excluding Jake. Olive put that phone away!” She turned on her daughter with fury in her eyes.

“But mom -”

Now.” The phone went into Olive’s pocket with a lot of huffing and puffing. “Tommy, obviously something’s bothering you, but please try and get through it, we can talk about it later.”

“I don’t want to talk about!”

“Okay, fine. And apologise to your brother for punching him. And Oliver, you apologise for mocking your brother! And Kitty move your hand from your mouth, I know you’re sniggering behind there!” The two boys exchanged a grumpy apology, Arielle usually would have made them give a proper one but she realised she was going to get nowhere with Tommy tonight, and she didn’t want to make any more of a scene than had already taken place. They took to staring each other out in anger instead. Tommy planned ways to ruin Olivers easels while Oliver thought of places he could hide Tommy’s gym clothes and the best instruments to puncture his footballs with.

“Now let’s just finish dinner shall we?” The conversation slowed down after that, with none of the children wanting to talk due to their anger at being upstaged by their mother it all fell on the nervous Jake, who ended up telling much more about his life than he had thought would be necessary when he first arrived for dinner.

“Oh my God mom I feel sick!” Olive yelled, pushing over her chair as she jumped up from the table, standing there with her hands over her mouth.

“Oh jeez shes gonna spew!!” Oliver yelled holding his empty plate in front of him as a mock shield. Beofre anyone could ask what was the matter she was gone, flying out of the room leaving everyone confused. Why was she ill?

“I guess dinners over.” Arielle said as she stood up and began clearing the plates. “Nice having you Jake.”

The Party

“How shall I sit for my interview? I don’t want to seem nervous, but I don’t want to look like I know I’m going to get it. Does this look arrogant?” Kitty asked as she sat on the comfortable chair in the corner of her bathroom, testing out poses for her upcoming interview at the local paper, which fell under the Belgravia Industries umbrella.

“Hmm.” Olive turned to her sister and gave her a once over. “I think it looks fine, just pick a way to sit and stick to it, or better yet don’t think about it at all, you don’t want to over think it.” She turned back to the mirror and began examining her pores. “After all,” She covered the beginnings of a spot with some of Kitty’s expensive concealer, “they’re looking at your journalistic talents, not the way you sit.”

“I know but I don’t want to leave anything to chance!” Kitty said as she tested having her arms folded.

“They’re not gonna hire you because you look so demure you know Kit.”

“Oh I know, I know.” She stood up and shook her arms and legs, as if to get them out of the poses they had been stuck in for the last half hour. “Do you think I should try out a new lipgloss?”

“No, I think you suit that one, which one should I wear?” Olive asked as she sat down, looking through the extensive collection which was all held in a large box. “Have you ever even worn this?” She said, holding up a stick of hot pink.

“I’ve never worn most of them, they’re just good to have, for times like now when you need one!” Kitty replied, applying some mascara and checking herself out.

The two sisters moved from the bedroom, after Olive decided to not wear any lipstick after all.

“You have such beautiful jewellery sis, can I borrow this?” Olive asked as she sat on the floor pouring over Kittys antique jewellery box while Kitty slipped into the dress she had finally chosen.

“Is that guy from school coming tonight?” Kitty asked.

“James? I guess so, I didn’t dare invite him though. His parents work with dad so I guess he’ll come with them. I’m so nervous!” Olive distracted herself with her outfit for the night, she liked James, she really thought he could be her boyfriend, if only he would talk to her.

“Why? You have to talk to him, he’s so cute, and you would be so beautiful together!” Kitty wanted her sister to have as good a relationship as she had with Jake.

“Yeah okay, maybe I will.” She had no intention of actually doing so. She’d been admiring Tommy’s friend Austin for years, she’d even tried to flirt with him once but came up against a brick wall, she felt like she must be so ugly!

“I know that means you won’t! Come on what’s the problem?!” Kitty persisted.

“Kitty just drop it! It’s okay for you, boys love you with your little stick thin body and your blonde hair and your glossy lips! Who would want me?” She was on the verge of tears as she yelled at Kitty.

“Olive! How can you even say that, you know it took me ages to talk to Jake but I finally did it and look how it all turned out! You’re absolutely beautiful sis, you have such pretty hair and your body is amazing!”

“You think so? You’re sweet..”

“.. but I have to work for it. You’re so lucky that you don’t.” Olive blinked a few times, she could feels tears threatening to spill out, she couldn’t ruin her make up and get a blotchy face a few minutes before the party.

“Hey girls is everything okay, you ready?” Arielle asked, walking into the room in her long, flowing red dress.

“Oh my gosh mom you look amazing!” Olive yelled, staring at her mother.

“You don’t think I overdid it? I know this is so important to your father, I wanted to make a good impression.” She asked as she fumbled with her dress. “Oh!” She exclaimed as she let go of the dress and took in her two daughters properly, “You two look so beautiful.” Arielle smiled down at them, she loved them so much, loved that they could have these girly experiences of getting ready together before parties, talk about boys and whatever else they did. She put her arms around their shoulders and the three of them walked to the famous mirror that was always used for posing in before heading out to a party.

The party was a formal affair. Champagne was flowing freely around the room as waiters held their trays aloft darting in and out of the impeccably manicured guests. Noah was hoping to land a master maestro for his orchestra, and the party was an attempt to schmooze him into the deal. An avid celebrity worshipper, the presence of Noah’s famous wife and her family, especially the legend herself Lily Belgravia, would go a long way to sealing the deal. The den, which had been set up with a dance floor and gobos, had became the epicentre of the youth of the party, with all the teens grinding and dancing any way they wanted.

“Oh my gosh don’t look now – Mindy is here!” Kitty stage whispered to Olive as they stood in the centre of the dancefloor.

“She’s a little cow! Why would she come here after what she did to Milly?!” Olive fumed, staring across the room at Mindy.

“Oh my God – don’t freak out, she’s headed towards Oliver.” Kitty tried to be inconspicuous, dancing in circles around her sister as her gaze followed Mindy across the room to her little brother. “They’re dancing together!”

“Is she determined to get every Belgravia male going? She’ll be jumping on grandpa next!”

“At least Oliver doesn’t look very interested…” Kitty mused as she checked out the situation in the rest of the room.

“Hey what’s up with Tommy?” Olive asked, staring across the room to where Tommy was stood scowling, the date he had brought hanging behind him.

“Oh Rosy! I forgot he was bringing her – I feel bad for her, she’s totally in love with him and he’s just ignoring her!” Kitty fretted, wondering whether to go over and save Rosy from her clearly terrible date.

“Oh. My. God. Who is that weirdo?! She came in a swimsuit…?” Olive laughed as she pointed across the room to a girl who had clearly arrived expecting a pool party. Kitty laughed along with her sister. “The swimsuits so last season too.”

“I know right!” Olive and Kitty burst into laughter as they continued to stare at her.

“Sushi ladies” Offered a waiter, holding his tray in front of them.

“Ooh definitely!” Kitty said excitedly, grabbing a few pieces while Olive stood staring at the tray. “Olive, take some!” Kitty said, her mouth full of food. Olive reluctantly took a piece.

“Isn’t it strange, seeing our girls so grown up?” Arielle commented as she danced slowly with Noah, the odd couple amongst the throngs of teenagers. “God I wish I could still dance like them.” Arielle laughed as she watched Kitty hitting the dancefloor like she herself did in her youth.

“Arielle. You have to tell them.” Noah had been pushing her to tell the family about her cancer for weeks now, but he realised how hard it must be for her, and was there every step of the way, just waiting for the day when she was ready to tell the children.

“Yes, soon. For now, lets dance.”

“Where’s Olive?” Oliver asked, joining Kitty in her wild dancing.

“I dunno actually. Stay here, I better go find her.” Kitty was worried that she was upset about James, who had been talking to Kirsty in the corner of the room all night, and hadn’t so much as glanced in Olive’s direction.

“Olive?! Olive!!” Kitty went from room to room, searching the entire first floor, which was packed full of people, the second floor, which had a couple of people hanging around on the sofas in the hallway and a few waiting for the bathroom, and finally ended up on the deserted third floor. Every room was empty, and finally she came to her own. This was the only place she could be, the furthest room in the house. As she entered she was a little scared, it was pretty much silent way up here, the light sounds of laughter and clinking glasses drifting in through one of the windows she had left open, the curtains blowing in the breeze. Olive was nowhere in sight. Marching into the bathroom she slammed the lights on, but she couldn’t see Olive anywhere. Then she heard it, the light sobs, but she still didn’t know where they were coming from.

“Who’s there!?” Kitty shouted, becoming more freaked out by the second. She looked around, her eyes becoming drawn to the open toilet. She was sure she had shut it when she left. Looking down she saw it was filled with vomit, she had no idea what was going on. Then she saw her sisters thin figure huddled under the sink, sobbing into her knees.

“Olive! Are you okay, come out of there!” Kitty leaned down, tugging on her sisters hand, begging her to come out and talk to her. “You’re scaring me Olive, did you make yourself sick?” She had thought about Olive’s behaviour that night, she could have been drunk, but she hadn’t had a drink. She either must be genuinely ill or had made herself sick. Kitty’s instincts took her to the latter. After much coaxing Olive finally crawled out from under the sink, resting her head in her sisters lap as they laid on the ground.

“I’m sorry Kitty, I didn’t want you to see me like this.” Olive said, finally standing up and wiping away the tears from her face.

“Why would you do this to yourself?” Kitty questioned sternly. She felt bad for her sister, but she knew that this was no way for her to live her life. Kitty was expecting a heartfelt confession, maybe a few more tears, but what she got instead was Olive’s fury.

“Oh Kitty you have it so easy don’t you!” She screamed, throwing her arms wide.

“What?” Kitty was too shocked to argue back, and she didn’t want to upset her sister any more.

“Everyone in this family has something! Tommy’s the sporty one, Oliver’s the painter, even Cora is a little musical genius already – and you, the star of the family with a job at that pathetic grocery store, debate and newspaper club, published writer, political extrordinare, ‘destined for great things’ as Noah said! Well what about me?! I don’t know what I want to do – I’m not interested in things the same way you guys are! I wish I was, I really do, but it seems all I can do is shop and gossip, nothing else!”

“Olive, what – where is this coming from?” Kitty stuttered, Olive’s fury seemed to know no bounds, her arms were flying everywhere, threatening to whack Kitty in the face.

“All of you have it together, you’re all perfect!” She knew little of Kitty’s underlying insecurities, her fear of failure, of Tommy’s battle with his sexuality and his academic struggles, or of Oliver’s loneliness. “My body is what I can control! Something goes in, I can get it out, if I’m thin at least I can look pretty, I may not have my life planned out but I’ll look good figuring it out!”

With those words she stormed out of the room, bringing down several shelves on the opposite wall from the force with which she slammed the door. Kitty was speechless, still cowering in the corner. How could her sister be doing this, bulimic? Eating disorders were dangerous, people died from them! She had to find her mother and get her help.

“Mom I need your-” Kitty cut her sentence short as she ran into the kitchen and was faced with her entire family facing her mother and father, who clearly had an announcement. She joined the children in line, standing as far as possible from Olive, who had been planning on escaping into the hedge maze but had been dragged into the kitchen for a family meeting.

“Can we hurry this up?!” Tommy yelled. Austin was on his way to the party and he couldn’t decide if he wanted to run away from him in shame or run straight into his arms. He was about to complain again before Noah put him down with a stern glance, standing behind his wife, her protector.

“Kids I have something to tell you, now I don’t want you to be upset…” She wondered if she was making the right decision, about to tell her children about her cancer in the middle of a party. She had decided to do it, and she knew she had to do it now or she never would, but the words were just so hard to say. Once she did it, everything would change. The kids would be worried about her, they wouldn’t be able to lead such full lives as the weight of their mothers life would be hanging over their heads until she got better, or, God forbid, died.

“Mom?!” Oliver urged his mother on with a scowl, there was a girl he wanted to talk to in the next room, he thought she would be perfect to paint.

“Well the thing is, I’m ill kids. I have been for, a while now.” They all stared back at her with shock, exchanging worried glances between themselves.

“That’s why your mother and I went to Sunset Valley, to explore treatment options.” Noah explained as Arielle gathered her composure.

“It’s bad kids, I don’t know what’s going to happen, it’s -” She felt strange, her heart was pounding in her chest, her throat felt like it was constricting. Her eyes widened as she turned to Noah in panic. The children exchanged more worried glances, they still didn’t know the extent of her illness. Time seemed to slow down as the family watched their mothers eyes flutter shut and her body go limp as she began falling, her red dress cascading around her as her body hit the floor.

Suburbia Update (Yes… Another One)

Sorry for the mass amounts of updates on this house but I know how much people like it (and I really love showing it off) – so here you have it, another version of the house with a few key updates including: third floor, updated den, garage, first and second floor extension, sun room, Oliver’s bedroom, Olive’s bedroom, teen versions of Kitty and Tommy’s room, nursery, and gates to keep the paparazzi out (they were always outside the front door!)

Old pictures of the home all included in case you’re looking at it for the first time (I also think it’s better to have an overall picture.)

The home has been moved to a new neighbourhood yet again, credit to Callie for hooking me up with this amazing neighbourhood, Redcliffs.

Living Area

Den/Family Room

Kitchen

Pantry/Laundry Room

Sun Room/Art Studio

Dining Room

TV Room

Noah’s Study

Upstairs Landing

Arielle & Noah’s Bedroom

Arielle & Noah’s Bathroom

Tommy’s Bedroom

Kitty’s Bedroom

Kitty’s Bathroom

Olive’s Bedroom

Olive’s Bathroom

Oliver’s Bedroom

Nursery/Cora’s Bedroom

Guest Bedroom 

Garden

Comprehensive view of the house

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