Tag Archives: problems

Generation 4 – Chapter 3

Waking up the morning after the disastrous dinner party Electra let out a loud groan. She had hoped the entire thing was a dream, but unfortunately she was back to reality. The modelling shoot she had been so apprehensive over now seemed like a blessing, it gave her an excuse to get out of the house for a few hours. Jumping out of bed she jogged to the bathroom, hoping not to wake Ryan. After brushing her hair, which she was thinking of dying once more soon, she padded into her walk-in-wardrobe and put on a tiny pair of denim shorts and a plain black vest. After slipping into a pair of cowboy boots she had picked up at a vintage store on Baywood she was ready to go.

Riding in the elevator up the huge monolith of glass after the short subway ride Electra felt excitement more than nerves, sure she she had been a little apprehensive over the shoot, she was a 19 year old being photographed by a famous fashion house. Despite her reservations she was still more than willing to give it her all now that she was there, and throwing open the double doors in front of her she stepped into the studio. A rail of clothes flew past her carried by an ematicated helper in four inch stilettos, a random photographer took a candid shot of her, and three makeup girls rushed past into the next room, where a much more famous rock star was also having a photoshoot.

Looking around the room she spotted Marc, stood in the shooting area on the huge white sheets which covered the walls and floor, engaged in conversation with the photographer. He was evidently telling some sort of joke because the man kept bursting out in laughter.

“Slim!” Marc shouted, noticing her bright purple hair from a mile off, and admiring her legs in the tiny shorts as she crossed the room. After introducing himself with a peck on each cheek the photographer went to prep his cameras, giving Marc the room to embrace her in a tight hug.

“Still recovering from last night?” He asked with a laugh as he thought about the dinner party.

“You’re the one who should be recovering!” She replied, grabbing his arm to look for the mark, fortunately Maud’s violence had only left four tiny dots.

“Yeah, yeah, I’ma  big boy, I’ll be fine. You excited to be a model!?” He said with a theatrical gasp, causing her to break out in laughter, he never took anything seriously, which was one of the reasons they got along so well.

“Yeah, totally.” She joked back, “I’m just doing it to get out the word on the band.”

“Come on lovebirds, let’s get started!” The photographer, Lorenzo, shouted, now in position. Electra wasn’t phased by the lack of hair and makeup, this was her and she was happy with it. “This is a natural shoot honeys, don’t worry you both look divine, love suits you!” Lorenzo said, not really noticing that neither of them cared. “So you’re the two who are dating, right?” He asked as he began snapping away.

“No!” Electra said at the same time as Marc’s “Yes!” She looked at him in shock, but he only grinned back.

“Get into it, pose for me!” Lorenzo shouted, shooting away. “Fabulous!” He said as they struck pose after pose. He eventually came up with quite a few shots he liked, they were both naturals. After a rather slow start the two of them had gotten right into it, posing without any embarrassment. Neither of them took themselves too seriously, Electra had grown up with the pompous air which Olive employed all around her – and hated it. Unfortunately Lorenzo had skipped the shots of them sticking their tongues out and dancing, he was a more serious guy.

It was over before it had even begun, and Electra was surprised to learn she loved it! It had been the easiest thing in the world to fall into a few poses, it wasn’t as if they were high fashion models being exposed to the world, the fashion house had simply thought they had style and were going places, and that it would be good to give them a photoshoot so their name could get out there a little more – hopefully they would remember it when they made it.

“So, what’s your story – who are you – where’d ya come from – all that jazz.” The photographer said, whipping out a pad as Electra looked at Marc with an amused glance, he knew she hated interviews, she had seen her mother be misconstrued so badly in the press and didn’t want her opinions being twisted to suit the needs of the interviewer.

“I’m Marc, this is Slim, and the other members of the band are Ryan and Sammy. Newly formed and trying to make it on the Bridgeport scene. That’s about it.” Marc said, taking the edge of the tiny interview with a big grin. They didn’t want to ride off the Belgravia name, and referring to Electra by her nickname helped to cover who she was – it wasn’t exactly a secret, she just didn’t talk about it.

“Hmph. Well – good luck, I better go see to the star next door.” He said with an imperious tone, and left the room. The two of them were alone now, and for some reason Electra felt a sexual tension in the room, she had no idea where it was coming from, Marc was purely a friend.

“So, you enjoyed it then? You looked hot.” Marc said, knowing that she had liked the experience as much as he had. He was close to her now, closer than what her mother said ‘was appropriate’ and she found herself a little put out, although she’d never let Marc know that.

“Loved it, how about you?.” Electra asked, moving back a few steps trying to get out of range from his glinting, flirting eyes. As much as he enjoyed flirting with her Marc also felt he could relate to her – got the problems with Maud, having a rather troubled mother himself. Luckily his father was still around to take care of her, so he didn’t have as much responsibility as Ryan, but he knew sometimes you just needed to get away, and that’s what he wanted to do for Electra.

“Wanna hit the clubs?” He became flirtatious again as he spoke, causing Electra to look down a little shyly. She and Ryan had been monogamous since they started dating, but she had flirted (and more) a lot before she met him, it was kind of a kick to do it again.

“C’mon, as friends.” Marc could sense that she was enjoying the slight flirting, but knew it would upset her if she thought this was some sort of date – she really did love Ryan, just couldn’t deal with his dysfunctional mother right now.

“I can’t, Sebastian’s friends from school have flown in and are staying at the loft, we’re having a little party tomorrow, I’ll see you there about 8.” She gave him a friendly peck on the cheek before dashing out of the door. Oddly she felt wildly excited by the attention Marc had shown her, Ryan had been so caught up with his mother lately she had felt a little neglected. The arrival of Sebastian’s friends was a welcome one, lately it had been show after show after show, where they didn’t really get a chance to experience the night properly, followed by hours fretting over Ryan and Maud. She was desperately excited for the house to be full of people, things had became awkward between her and Ryan lately and she just couldn’t bare another night with him and Maud. Coming out of the building her mood was ruined by the sight of her mother – locked in embrace with a man who definitely wasn’t Marcus – across the street.

Even from such a far distance Electra was blinded by the huge diamond on Olive’s finger which caught the light in a dazzling show, the ruby in the centre seeming to cast its own aura. This was probably Olive’s new husband, how could Electra be surprised?

*      *      *

Electra, Sebastian, Ricky, and Nate all walked into the apartment in an amazing mood after a few hours down at The Polo Club. While not great friends with the two boys Electra had known them socially from school back in Redcliffe, they were fun, carefree and glamorous, with six-goal handicaps and deep suntans from spending the past 12 months jetting around the world playing polo on the fields of Argentina, Palm Beach, Deauville, and England. Electra was glad that before she had met up with her brother and the boys she had booked herself an appointment to strip the purple from her hair, everything that wasn’t black had clashed horribly with it and it would have made her look so out of place. While she liked doing her hair crazy for the shows, it just wasn’t for her to have it like that at all times.

“Great flat Electra – oh it’s Slim now, right?” Ricky said with a smile as he looked around the loft.

“Call me whatever!” Electra replied as she poured them all massive vodka and oranges in the kitchen, simultaneously looking around for any sign of Ryan – or more pressingly, Maud.

“You need a dog in here, mans best friend you know.” Nate informed the group as he flopped onto the sofa after depositing their polo sticks in Electra’s bedroom, rubbing a bruise under his breeches were Electra had rapped him with her mallet during their match.

“We were thinking of getting one, weren’t we sis?” Sebastian shouted to Electra as leafed idly through a book on thoroughbreds.

While Electra had no difficulty in leaving life with Olive behind, Sebastian, who had always been far more attuned to that lifestyle than his sister, still missed it. He still wore his Ralph Lauren shirts, visited art galleries full of Old Masters (which he could have seen much closer up if he had visited one of Olive’s many homes, which were loaded with them), and went to the Polo Club a few times a week to play on a horse he rented, as all of his own had been left at Belgrave Ranch. He had an ability to get on with anybody, but it was good for him to have Ricky and Nate around, his two best friends from school; they were similar to Sebastian, he felt he could be himself more around them.

“Need any help?” Ricky asked in his English accent as he approached Electra at the bar. He had always admired Sebastian’s sister, and thought she was looking better than ever lately.

“Sure, take these over will you?” Ricky took the two drinks Electra had already made and delivered them to Nate and Sebastian, who were discussing the first chukka.

“How’s your music going anyway?” Ricky asked Electra, only half heatedly listening as she replied, all Ricky listened to were the evening racing results and occasionally The Beatles. He was more interested in looking at her.

“Where’s that boyfriend you mentioned?” He continued, hoping that Ryan, who Electra had mentioned briefly during their game earlier, wouldn’t make an appearance so he would have a shot at Electra.

“Oh – I dunno.” Electra replied, a little sadness in her voice. She had joined Ricky  on the bar-stools now, and listened as he told her a little about his year, it sounded so fun and interesting, all she had done was a few gigs which hadn’t gotten them any recognition from a recording company.

“Look – I’m positive you’ll get recognition soon enough. Anyway, if you don’t you could always come join us on the field, my patrons always looking for great looking, really good girl players to sponsor,  they add such a higher level to the games.” Ricky lingered for a while over the words ‘great looking’, his disarming eyes staring at her with lust – she looked away.

“How the hell did you manage to get to six so soon?” Sebastian asked Nate as they sat together on the sofa. While he may have missed some parts of his old life, he still enjoyed the one he was living – he loved the loft, and being Revolutionis’ manager, he just wished more was happening. No matter how hard he tried he just couldn’t get record companies interested in the band, making him feel like a failure.

“Jesus! Have I walked into a prep school?” They all looked up from their positions on the various sofas as Sammy walked unannounced into the loft, looking the polar opposite of the four of them, who hadn’t bothered to change from their polo clothes, in her all black outfit, with her sunglasses on and a cigarette between her fingers.

“Hey Sam!” Electra threw Sammy a smile, remembering not to jump up and hug her – Sammy hated physical contact.

“Whatsup?” Sammy replied as she flopped onto the sofa next Nate, in Sebastian’s old seat. “Saw your mom in the paper today,” she said to Sebastian and Electra, “got herself married again.” Sammy flipped through a pile of CD’s which were piled up on the end table as she spoke, looking for something more to her liking as Sebastian and Electra exchanged amused glances – so the man Olive had been with was a husband number four.

“Who the heck is she?” Ricky asked Electra, a little put out by Sammy’s appearance.

“Our keyboard player.” She replied with a laugh, in a way his reaction reminded her of the night she took Sebastian to his first bar, he had acted so conservative before then, out of the bedroom that is.

“Why are you guys dressed like idiots anyway?” Sammy asked as she took a drag on her cigarette, opening the pack up to Nate who took one for himself.

“Polo.” Nate replied as he lit the cigarette, passing the box back to Sammy.

“Ugh! I should have known. I always forget you two,” she waved airily at Electra and Sebastian, “are thoroughbred blue bloods. Must have got it from your mom, have you heard who she’s marrying?” She asked, pausing dramatically, “Charles freakin’ Peredin-Bauer, governor of Bridgeport.” Sammy shook her head in amazement.

“Really?” Ricky asked casually, “he plays polo with my father sometimes when we’re over here, quite a nice man.”

“You gotta be kidding me.” Sammy said, laughing. “Anyway, where’s Marc? Oh and Ryan?” She said, just noticing that Ryan wasn’t here as she had expected him to be.

“Marc just text me, he’s on his way.” Sebastian said, hardly looking up from the book which he had quickly became engrossed in.

“And I’m right here.” Ryan said as he walked into the room. Electra jumped up and ran over to him, she was thrilled that Maud was nowhere in sight.

“How was your day?” She asked, moving in for a kiss. He turned his head to the side so it landed not on his lips as she had planned, but his cheek.

“Moms not doing so good, I better go call her.” He spoke softly, hardly looking at Electra.

“Whats wrong?” Electra was hardly Maud’s biggest fan – but she was Ryan’s biggest fan. “You can tell me.” She stared at him, hoping for answers. He merely looked away, taking in the guests.

That’s her boyfriend?” Ricky asked Nate, who had moved to sit next to him, “I was expecting a lot more, I mean, why’s he being so blunt? She’s gorgeous…” He looked at Electra, with the same lust in his eyes as he had shown earlier.

“Where’s he going?” Nate asked as they watched Ryan move behind the rooms partition, where he pulled out his phone and immediately called Maud. Ricky quickly looked over at Electra, it had been the first time she had really smiled in hours when she embraced Ryan, only Ricky saw her features fall into dismay before she took a deep breath and pulled herself together.

“Arsehole.” Ricky muttered.

“Don’t hang up!” Ryan could be heard shouting from the dining area. Maud, who wouldn’t tell him where she was or who she was with, had slammed the phone down on him. He could feel the emotions churning inside of him, he felt desperately guilty for not giving Electra more attention recently, she had been so patient and understanding, but it must be getting frustrating. He simply didn’t want to upset her with all of Maud’s troubles, he would deal with them – it had always been that way. With a resolute sigh he began dialing her number again, he would call her all night if it would keep her away from drugs.

“Hey guys!” Marc’s unrelenting cheer raised Electra’s spirits a little as he walked into the loft. Giving him a friendly peck on the cheek she crossed the loft and went to the bedroom, locking the door firmly behind her.

“I see it’s polo season.” Marc continued, shaking hands with Ricky and Nate, who instantly liked him far better than Ryan.

“Nice to meet you all. Where’s Liberty?” He asked as he looked around the room, which now contained Sebastian, who was sat on a chair still engrossed in his book, Ricky and Noah, who were having an in depth conversation about ways to get their sponsor to give them more money, and Sammy, who, having been left alone on the sofa, was chain smoking while talking animatedly into her cell phone.

“You asshole! I’ll tell everyone how you like to dress up in my panties!” Sammy screamed in to the phone as she jumped up from the sofa, “you think I won’t? Watch me!” She kept him on the line as she turned to the group and burst out laughing. “Everyone, you should know my now ex-boyfriend really loves dressing up in my panties!”

“Interesting!” Laughed a voice which rose above the other whoops of laughter. “How is everyone?” Liberty smiled as she crossed the room, the expansive and intimate smile that had today won her a three-part guest role on a medical drama.

“Hel-lo! And who are you?” Nate said, jumping up from the sofa and kissing her hand, causing her to break out in giggles.

“She’s my girlfriend, so hands off.” Sebastian said with a grin as he enveloped Liberty in a huge hug before planting a long, lingering kiss on her lips.

“You always did get the pretty ones.” Nate said, sitting back down. Now that Sammy had broken up with her boyfriend he decided to have a try with her.

“Oh Liberty, nice to see you!” Electra said as she came back from the bedroom, no one clocked onto the fact that her makeup was completely fresh, having washed it all away with her tears. Liberty grabbed Electra’s hand and dragged her onto the sofa next to Sammy, where she started to fill the group in on her audition. Marc grabbed Sebastian while the rest of the group were preoccupied and pulled him to the side.

“Listen man, I gotta ask you something.” Marc spoke quickly, nervous that the conversations going on across the room would lull and everyone would hear him.

“What is it?” Sebastian replied, worried that something was seriously wrong.

“Well – it’s Slim.” Marc blurted out as Sebastian looked at him in shock, “I can’t stop thinking about her, I haven’t ate, I haven’t slept, I mean I haven’t even had a smoke since we finished the photo shoot yesterday!” Sebastian laughed, as if breaks from cigarettes made it so serious.

“Look – she loves Ryan.” Sebastian replied evenly, resisting an urge to punch Marc in the face, I mean this was his sister he was talking about.

“I know, I know, but they haven’t been getting on recently, we’ve all noticed it  you must have too. Ryan’s just so preoccupied, it’s that god-damn bitch of a mother of his, I could make her happy!” Marc was getting excited now, thinking how much of a better boyfriend he’d be to Electra.

“Just leave it, okay? If Electra,” – Sebastian never did get into the habit of using his sisters nickname – “and Ryan aren’t meant to be then yeah, maybe you’ll have a chance. But don’t break their relationship apart, its not fair to Ryan.” Marc and Sammy were sick of Ryan’s mood lately, but Sebastian saw past it – he knew he was going through a rough patch and tried to be understanding about it.

From his position on the chesterfield Ricky had heard most of what Marc was saying – Nate had been staring at Liberty the entire time, oblivious to everything.  If Marc was making a play for Electra he had to beat him too it, he had planned on waiting until their relationship had broken apart – it was clear it was about to, then moving in on her, but if Marc was playing dirty, he would too.

“And then they told me I had the part!” Liberty exclaimed happily, finishing her audition story, only slightly put out that Ryan was pacing up and down behind her waiting for Maud to call back.

As the night wore on the small party got wilder, the drinks on empty stomachs had made everyone quite giddy, and when Marc suggested dancing they all – well, most of them – were more than up for it.

Sammy, who had found Nate far to upper class and far too full of himself earlier in the day, was now very susceptible to his considerable charms, and had even allowed him to dance with her. Granted he was doing more of a ‘dad dance’ than her wild moves, but the way he was looking at her made her forget all about it.

Sebastian, who loved to get lose at the Revolutionis gigs, was showing off some of his dance moves, causing everyone to burst out laughing as he went from move to move, laughing his handsome head off.

Even Ricky, usually appearing very macho by refusing to dance, got up and shook his lean hips a little, he couldn’t help himself, hanging around with Sebastian and Electra’s friends had loosened him up considerably, he felt he could relax more than he could with the trust fund babies who he usually hung around with.

The only two people who weren’t having fun were Ryan and Electra. Hidden from the group by the rooms partition, their voices blocked by the extra loud music, no one knew what was going on.

“Just tell me what’s wrong Ryan, please. All I want to do is help!” Electra said, her sympathy breaking a little as she became more and more annoyed at his guarded nature.

“Leave it Electra!” He shouted back, resisting the urge to strike her, his mother had done it to him growing up and it had always worked, but he had vowed never to hit a woman.

“Oh for god sake!” Electra screamed back, finally losing her temper, “its all Maud’s fault! Why can’t you just check her into a clinic or something?! If you’re worried about the money I can pay for it! She needs help!”

“You’re so fucking selfish! She’s my mother and I’m gonna be there for her, we don’t need your charity!”

“Ryan, please!” She shouted back, becoming more frustrated by the second. Was Arielle right when she said the money would drive them apart? All she wanted to do was help!

“JUST LEAVE IT! Don’t ask me to chose between you and my mother because guess what – you’ll lose!”

“I – I wasn’t…” Electra muttered, shocked at how angry he was getting. What was it about his damn mother?!

“I’m out of here, I’ll be out searching for my mother – enjoy your damn party!” He shouted back, beginning to storm out of the loft.

“Ryan…” She reached out her hand, hoping he would just turn around and take it, but he didn’t. He stormed out of the loft, slamming the door behind him. Feeling utterly selfish and guilty Electra sloped off to her bedroom, she felt like it was all her fault, if she could have just kept sucking it up everything would have been okay, she knew all about bad relationships from Olive, she should have been an expert at having one of her own.

A few minutes after Ryan had stormed out of the apartment Ricky noticed Electra’s absence. He had seen her stood with Ryan earlier, although he couldn’t hear anything they were saying over the music. Sauntering towards the dining area, a little tipsy, he started shouting her name, ready to get her to join in.

“Eee-leeeect-raaa?!” He said with a grin as he walked around, illogically checking if she was hiding under the table or behind plants – he was drunker than he thought.

“Where is she hiding?” He mumbled to himself with a laugh as he made his way into her bedroom. Taking a quick look around he was about to leave when he heard a muffled sob from the closet. Taking a closer look he saw the huddled figure of Electra, she had pulled the privacy curtain across and was sobbing into her arms. Suddenly he felt completely sober.

“Electra… are you okay?” He asked, keeping beyond the curtain.

After a few minutes of her sobbing he decided something had to be done.

“I’m coming in, okay?” Hearing no response from her he took it as a yes, and entered the closet. With a groan he eased his aching limbs onto the ground next to her, polo season took it out of him. Then he began to talk. He just spoke about what he knew – polo. He told her of the glamorous girls who tried to bag him in Palm Beach, of playing with the Prince of Wales in England, and how difficult it was sometimes – he refused to take his billionaire fathers money, insisting on paying for everything for himself, which made it extremely difficult, but made him feel a thousand times prouder.

Very slowly, after talking to her for an hour or so, Electra came around. Looking up into Ricky’s eyes she smiled – a weak smile, but a smile nonetheless – she was so grateful, he had been so nice to her.

“It’ll be okay.” Ricky said with a slightly stronger smile. He didn’t let on that he had never wanted to kiss someone so much, she was so radiantly beautiful, even in her vulnerability.

“Thanks for staying with me, you didn’t have to.” Electra said, wiping away the smudged mascara on her face as they both hauled themselves up off the floor. Looking into Ricky’s eyes after almost stumbling on the way up she felt she was safe, he was so nice.

They embraced in a totally natural hug, both feeling as if it was right, and as they pulled away Electra didn’t back off, and neither did he. She closed her eyes and moved in to kiss him, he was just showing too much kindness for her not too. Watching the tantalizingly full lips moving towards him Ricky had to exert every ounce of self control to pull away. He wanted her more than he had ever wanted a woman, and despite his thoughts about playing dirty to beat Marc to her he just couldn’t do it like this – if it was going to happen he wanted it to be real.

“Electra, I can’t, not like this. You’re upset, I don’t want you to do anything you might regret.” He was churning inside, how was this possible?! It was as if he was falling in love with her, they hardly knew each other!

“What the hell’s going on here?!” they both jumped at the sound of Marc’s voice. He was framed in the doorway, seething.

“Marc! Don’t be upset!” Electra said quickly, she knew that he liked her and couldn’t bring herself to hurt someone else.

“Save it! You knew that I liked you, or haven’t I made myself clear?! And you get with him?! Well you can forget about it, and you can forget about the stupid band too!” With that he turned on the heel of his brown leather boots and stormed out of the room.

“Please, go after him!” Electra begged Ricky, who quickly complied, running after Marc. Alone in the closet again Electra slid to the floor once more, the sobs that Ricky had worked so hard to subside coming back worse than ever. She had drove Ryan away, Ricky didn’t want her, and now Marc hated her. It had been the worst party she could have possibly imagined.

*      *      *

So – how are you enjoying this generation?! I’m loving writing it, I’m so glad you guys voted in Electra. Who would you like to see Electra end up with? As you can see she’s pretty conflicted at the moment.

– Marissa x

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.