Hi folks! I know I said I’d post this last week, and I could have done, but it would have been rushed and I like a day or two to sit on a chapter and mull over the finished results. The tone of this one is a little weird to me because half of the POV is elsewhere, but there we go.
Oh, and I do mean to catch up on wordpress, hopefully tomorrow, but I also wanted to post this chapter before I could sit on it any longer!
“Fluke,” Skye muttered under her breath. “Beginners luck, for sure.”
Summer glanced over at Felix’s lane, shared a glance with Skye at his dancing, and then spent a minute dithering over which ball to pick. Skye shook her head in exasperation when Felix bounced back to her, grinning widely, and gestured for her to go with a flourish.
“See if you can beat that,” he crowed.
“How is it,” Skye wondered aloud, “that you are never competitive until it comes to games?”
“Men,” Uma said, with a wink and a twinkle in her eye. “Oh, Bethany’s back with some drinks.”
“Beth, you said you hadn’t bowled before,” Uma said, a questioning tone in her voice. Bethany held a finger to her lips and shushed her.
“No matter. It’s all about science, right? I tried to tell Lox that, but he was adamant that he’d rather have his adenoids extracted through his anus before bowling.”
“Okay, so, I just pick the ball up, choose my strategy and let it go. Hmm. Okay, let’s do this.”
“I – okay, close enough,” Uma sighed. She was partial to a good game of bowling, and thanks to the tradition of her family to bowl every Christmas together she wasn’t too shabby.
“Science let me down,” she said mournfully, watching as her ball slumped into the gutter and continued merrily to its doom.
“Are you alright?” Summer asked, starting forward, but Bethany waved her off and picked herself up.
“Yes! That was fun. When can I go again?”
“I like you,” Felix decided with a grin, sending his ball spinning off with skill.
Skye and Summer exchanged amused looks again. Skye was about to start her European adventure, Felix by her side, and they had decided to have a get together before that happened. Though Felix had met Uma before – Summer’s romantic side insisted that double dates were cute – this was the first time Bethany had met him.
Their group gelled well; even Loxley enjoyed the company of the five of them, and the sense of friendship and belonging the siblings felt with the group was immense. This was what they had been looking for since they were young, and unlike Faye, they felt no need to pretend to be someone they weren’t just to make a shaky friendship.
“A whole two quid for diving in ridiculous footwear,” Serenity sighed, slipping into the pool and pulling her inflatable lounger with her.
“You’re gonna eat shite,” Finn cackled from somewhere in the water. Liam shook his head, determined, and cracked his knuckles.
“Alright, Tom Daley, eat your heart out.”
Finn and Ser’s delighted, shrieking laughter followed him as Liam bellyflopped into the pool, in a most spectacular fashion. He surfaced and groaned, his skin stinging from the impact, while Finn almost collapsed into the pool because he couldn’t stand up straight after the show.
“Ten out of ten,” he wheezed. “Fucking glorious, ya spoon.”
“The splash was quite something,” Ser agreed.
“Alright, your turn then, asshole,” Liam laughed, flicking water towards where Finn was recovering from his laugh epidemic.
Finn motioned for Liam to swim out of the way and positioned himself on the board, looking fierce enough that Serenity pushed her lounger back onto the side of the pool before it could get soaked. He jumped and soared into the air, gracefully diving through the water with all the flair and talent that Liam had lacked. He emerged with a grin, swam to the shallow end, and did his best to imitate a bow.
“You’re welcome for the spectacular show, ya nuggets.”
“I was wearing flippers,” Liam complained. “If I hadn’t, I’m sure I would have done just as well as you.” He stuck his tongue out for good measure, and Finn responded by flipping him off.
“Go on then, take them off and try again.”
Liam rubbed his red stomach. “Erm, no thank you.”
“I’ll give it a go,” Serenity said, motioning for the flippers.
Walking in them was hard enough, but Ser still managed to avoid a complete bellyflop and delighted in holding it over Liam’s head for the rest of the day. It was the last day before the outdoor pool would close, being widely known as the last day for the chance to have decent weather, so they were determined to make the best of it and enjoy each other’s company.
Liam had returned to the duo with both worry and hope in his heart, but they easily became a trio again with no arguments or awkward air between them. Although there had been some difficult conversations, things had worked out for them so far – and Liam had good reason to hope that it would continue to do so.
Unaware of her sibling’s good moods, Faye continued her day-to-day life with the distinct feeling that something wasn’t quite right. Well, what was right in her life? She lived with a helpful but distant flatmate, her only other relationship was dysfunctional and confusing, and the last text she had received from any of her family members was one from Loxley, reminding her that the rest of her siblings had planned to pool money for her father’s birthday. That had been almost a week ago.
Faye took out her frustrations on the arcade game upstairs in Hive, taking full advantage of her lunch break and the quiet Wednesday shift to make herself feel better. Unfortunately, it had the opposite effect; she always forgot how sick scrolling games made her, and her already upset stomach reminded her of that.
“What?” she snapped, not taking her eyes off the screen. With Kane’s hesitation to answer, she could tell her reaction had caught him off guard, and sighed. “Sorry,” she mumbled.
“Um… yeah, it’s fine,” he said awkwardly. “Those games just swallow your money, you know. Why not play some pool?”
“I don’t know how,” Faye sighed, after her character was horrifically eaten by a badly rendered monster.
“You don’t-“ Kane began to repeat, shaking his head in mock sadness. “Pool is a great game. Here, I’ll teach you.” He pulled on her arm and directed her towards the table. Faye looked at the place where he had touched her, her skin still feeling warm because of it. He’d been friendlier towards her the last couple of weeks, making an obvious effort to keep that olive branch extended.
“So you put all the balls in the middle like this, and then you gotta break them.”
“Yeah, with the white ball. And your cue, obviously.”
“Obviously,” Faye muttered, sharing a smirk with Kane at her commentary. Her heart fluttered at the casual exchange between them.
“Look, watch me,” Kane said, as if that wasn’t what Faye did with most of her free time at work. There was something about his arms that always made her swoon, probably because she knew from previous experience that he could pick her up quite easily…
With a clatter, the balls split apart and one even fell down a corner pocket. Kane looked just as surprised as her.
“I’d like to say I’m that good usually but… So since I putted, I should go again, but you can. Just choose a ball and give it a go.”
Faye wisely kept the crude comment to herself, resolutely refusing to look at Kane in favour of staring at the balls in front of her. The cue was surprisingly weighted, which struck Faye as odd for some reason. She always assumed they were incredibly light.
Faye’s brow furrowed as she tried to figure out the method behind the game. She could see and imagine how to strike the white ball to get it to hit another, but all it made her think about was how someone had come up with this game. She could understand something like football, which hardly needed anything but a ball to play with, but something like this would have had to have been envisioned from nothing. How did people have that much creativity?
She realised Kane was talking, explaining the choices she could make, and quickly tuned in to his instructions.
“How do I even reach the ball from here though?” Faye complained, half lying across the table and under no illusions where Kane’s gaze was. She turned over her shoulder and glared at him, but rather than look chastised he grinned cheekily.
Faye turned back to the pool table, her cheeks heating. More and more, Kane was showing his true self rather than his irritated and guarded mask, and Faye was aware of how quickly it was making her fall for him.
Luckily, it didn’t seem to be a one way thing.
Alicia returned from work to find Faye on the sofa, breath hitching in soft sobs. “Faye!” she exclaimed, surprised to see her flatmate so visibly upset. Mascara had run down her cheeks, and without her usual blush and foundation in place Faye’s cheeks seemed bizarrely hollow, despite the weight she had started putting on. “What on earth is the matter?”
“I – “ Faye hiccupped and slid down the sofa to sit on the floor, cupping her knees to her chest. “I’ve ruined everything. I’ve fucked up again.”
Alicia murmured vague words of consolation and approached her. “Is it to do with Kane?”
“What happens?” Alicia asked, alarmed, and Faye began to cry again.
“I-I-I went to the doctor’s. I’ve been feeling so shitty lately, and sick all the time, for like the last two months, and t-they asked me if I could be pregnant.” Faye groaned and hid her head behind her hands, causing Alicia to kneel beside her so that she could hear. “I told them I was taking the pill, so it was alright, but they said that the pill doesn’t guarantee I wouldn’t get pregnant! S-So they gave me the test.”
Faye only nodded. “I-I didn’t know that the pill w-wasn’t completely effective. The doctor who gave it to me didn’t tell me that!”
Faye started sobbing again and Alicia pulled her up with the end game of getting some tea in the kitchen. Tea made everything seem a bit better, she had quickly learned after moving here.
“Oh, Faye,” Alicia said, rubbing her hand over Faye’s back in a soothing circle. “There are… solutions, you know babe, if you don’t want to do this.”
“I know, I am. I can’t h-have a kid. Can you imagine?” She laughed a little, wiping her nose on her sleeve. “Me,” she said, shaking her head. “Me with a kid. I- I can barely l-look after myself. I’m hopeless.”
“Then why the tears, honey?”
“C-cause what would my family think? What would Kane think? I have to tell him even if I – I don’t tell anyone else. Right?”
Alicia nodded. “I think that would be fair, yes.”
“Thank you, Alicia,” she whispered. “I don’t know what I would do without you.”
Alicia smiled, slightly tight lipped, and put another cup of tea by her bed. The packet of pills sat innocently by her bed, and Alicia shook her head at them as if she could tell them off. Though she was well aware that Faye was irresponsible, with no sense of consequences, and completely blinded to how the real world worked, she believed that Faye had no idea that in rare – unlucky – cases, the pill had been shown to fail.
At least she was going to take the right choice going forward, despite this.
a/n: I am FOREVER upset that Carrie mentioned the pill not always being effective. She saw right through me, damn it! Here I thought I was being subtle about her upset stomachs, and the nausea that smelling avocados gave Faye 😛
Anyway, I have an interview in a week and a half’s time that I have to travel a lot for, and then I need to go somewhere else for a short course, so towards the latter half of this month I’m going to be able to catch up but probably not to post. But that’s okay, because I may have a mini hiatus between the end of Gen one and the start of Gen two – with the end of my internship coming up, a bunch of travelling between october and november, and the possible start of another internship (fingers crossed!) things will be too hectic to worry about sims stuff, and I’ll be posting the penultimate chapter of the BC I write on my simblr so it all works out.
For those that follow the Quest, season 3 has been planned out, so hopefully it’ll start posting before the end of this year.
Phew, that was long. Sorry!