Boreal Springs

February 23, 2009

Anderson 2 – Round 24: ‘The Look of Love, End’

Filed under: Anderson — Tags: , , , , , , — Mao @ 11:08 am

Kate finally has the family she always wanted.  Hugh and Kenya are still deeply in love, despite their struggles.  Rosa continues to thrive despite her adversity, but Lydia is finding her own troubles as she blunders her way through being a teenager.

Kate is not willing to leave her family behind.  She’s struggled hard for this!  But Death refuses to allow her to remain another second.  Her former husband is gone and now it’s time for Kate, too.  Her struggle means nothing in the end and Death takes her as he is wont to do.

Hugh doesn’t handle his mother’s death very well at all.  He hears the news as soon as he leaves his carpool.  His long-time admirer is about to swoop in and take advantage of his vulnerability before Kenya comes out and collects her husband.  She shoos the would-be homewrecker off and tries to reassemble her family, despite their grieving.

Lydia is shocked to find that her grandma is just suddenly gone. Rosa handles it better, despite being much younger.  But her life is a simple one, Lydia’s is not.  Her best friend has suddenly betrayed her and become some kind of hormonal crazy person she barely recognizes.  Now her grandma is gone.  The dogs offer little comfort.  She needs someone who will listen and give her advice.

Lydia seeks out her father.  He’s the only one left she can think of.  She loves her mother dearly, but her father has always been her shoulder to lean on.  Despite his own mourning, Hugh does his best to be there for Lydia.  He hadn’t realized the poor girl was dealing with so much.  He had become accustomed to Gregory being around or her being there, but never really imagined that becoming a teenager changes things, even friendships.

“It just feels wrong,” Lydia sniffled, the recalling of her grandma’s passing and her confusion over Gregory bringing her to tears.  “I mean, I should be able to call my friend, right?  Because my… my grandma… but I can’t… because he’ll just be thinking about that and I don’t, I mean.  I just want a friend!  I don’t want anything else…”

Hugh sighed, “boys come into these things faster than girls sometimes, Lydi.  You have to be patient.  If you truly don’t like him that way, it is your duty as his friend to not lead him on.  Be direct and perhaps your friendship will survive.”

Lydia decided to try and take her father’s advice.  Gregory came home with her afterschool and as they usually did on warm summer afternoons, they hung out by the pool.  When they were little, they used to pretend they were pirates, inspired by the beached, rotting ship out on the distant shore.  Now they were teenagers and instead, they talked.  Mostly about the weather, like awkward adults on a first date.

Lydia longed to say that she didn’t like him like that, but when confronted with him, she wasn’t quite sure what she felt.  So she said nothing.  She knew she should say something, to cut him loose, but Gregory was her friend.  She felt a selfishness wash over her as he suddenly spoke of Emma Davis.  Emma was younger than they were, but not by much.  Everyone knew she had a ridiculous crush on Gregory except him.  He was oblivious like that.

Hugh, meanwhile, was moving up in the world.  They’d never be rich, but his family would certainly be secure.  He wasn’t enjoying the longer hours, though, and missed being home with his girls.  They were growing up way too fast.  Rosa was usually coming in from school with Lyra at her heels when he was leaving for work.  They barely got to say goodbye to one another.

Lydia got a text message on the weekend to meet Gregory and she did, reluctantly.  It was at his dad’s new business, a cafe/restauraunt intended for family get-togethers and others who simply enjoy a nice, open atmosphere.  Still, the place looked way beyond Lydia’s means and she just felt… small there.  When she was finally able to focus on what Gregory was saying, she heard him mention Emma again. She had been here.  What was she doing here?  Her grandfather had helped with the place… Gordon Saunders.  Lydia felt her jaw clench tightly.  Of course.  Emma Davis was rich, Gregory was rich.  They were rich people meant for one another.

Lydia loved Gregory like a friend, but she wasn’t quite sure if she could get past the whole friend barrier.  He knew way too much to be a love interest!  Still, she wasn’t about to let Emma and her rich, spoiled brat ways to come in and ruin her friendship.  She’d steal Gregory and she’d lose her friend forever to fancy dress parties and stupid wine tasting trips!

Unfortunately, it didn’t make it any less awkward.  It was a mutually attempted kiss that ended in Lydia’s nose getting quite the knock.  Gregory was abashed, Lydia was mortified.  She could just tear Emma apart.  Let the little rich girl try a real fist fight once.

Rosa, meanwhile, was lacking in her studies.  She simply didn’t get school and had no real want to.  Her homework piled up and eventually, her teacher called Kenya.  That was the end of Rosa skipping out on her homework.  Kenya watched her like a hawk.  Rosa became rueful of her mother.

When Rosa became a teen, Kenya again tried to reinforce the importance of a good education.  Rosa shrugged her off.  She was an artist!  You couldn’t teach someone the skills she posessed.  She’d be awesome with or without straight A’s.  Kenya sighed.  She’d have to bring Hugh in on this one.  She simply wasn’t one for hard parenting and so it would take them both leaning on Rosa to get her to pay attention.

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Note from Mao: Poor Gregory and Lydia, LOL.  I have no idea where this is going.  Emma does really have a crush on Gregory… Emma and Lydia also do not like one another.  At all.  Which is hilarious.  Poor Gregory seems oblivious to it all, though he has no romantic wants for Emma, only Lydia.  Rosa is a horrible student.  She whines about homework.

January 27, 2009

Anderson 2 – Round 23: ‘The Look of Love, Pt. 5′

Filed under: Anderson — Tags: , , , , , , — Mao @ 4:39 pm

Kate is happy that her son, Hugh, and his wife, Kenya, have a happy marriage and two lovely girls, Lydia and Rosa.  They were hoping for a boy, though… maybe soon?

Rosa, despite her eccentricities, enjoys timid and calming things.  She spends a lot of her time painting in a corner, all by herself.  She’s not nearly as outgoing and loud as her older sister, Lydia.  Instead, she’s creative and subtle.  As much as they all hate to admit it, sometimes, they even forget she’s there!  That’s okay with Rosa, though.  She isn’t overly fond of this branch of the Anderson name being brash and overbearing.

Hugh and Kenya manage to go out on a date, the first time in what seems like forever.  Kate agreed to watch the girls while they headed out to Aperture for some unwinding.  Kenya was no good at singing, but indulged her overenthusiastic husband.  Hugh, on the other hand, had music in his blood.  It had been so long since he’d done anything really, truly creative with music.

The two greatly enjoyed their night together–the quiet, the calm, the ability to have adult conversation without little voices constantly interrupting.  There was love there, love that seemed completely endless.  Kenya had been a little worried, she knew Shang’s reputation and dating one of his sons?  Oh boy.  But Hugh was different and completely oblivious to the lascivious stares of the coworker that drove him home every night.  He was definitely unlike the rest.

Lydia and Rosa were sisters, but that didn’t mean they got along.  Rosa was too weird and Lydia was too energetic.  They clashed constantly, but never to the point of fighting.  Instead, it would begin with Lydia asking Rosa to go play, and Rosa quietly saying she’d rather paint.  Then Lydia would laugh and ask if he she planned to paint forever and hide away in the house.  She was already pale as a ghost!

They were sisters, but they’d never be best friends.

Lydia’s birthday came quickly, too quickly, for her parents and grandma.  Now she was a teen and while she matured a bit, she was still the same old Lydia.  She loved playing video games with her grandma and still picked on her little sister for being a weird nerd.  She still wrestled with the dogs and most of all, she still hung out with her very best friend, Gregory Anderson.

It was hard to say how long they had been friends, it seemed like forever.  Gregory had grown, too, like Lydia.  They were teens and their minds had changed, but not their friendship.  Best friends, thick as thieves, and yet so very different.  Gregory was obedient and driven, yet kind.  Lydia was a powerhouse of unbounding energy and wit, yet beneath it lie great knowledge and intelligence.  Together, they were an odd pair.  They often hung out in the park, even when it snowed.

“Do you think anything will ever change?” Gregory asked.  He always liked asking random, weird questions.

“Like what?”

“I don’t know, nevermind,” Gregory replied, wistful.  “It’s nothing.”

“You’re so weird, Greg.”

While Rosa may not have gotten along with her sister, she certainly enjoyed her mother’s company.  Kenya and Rosa were similar in their attitudes, the quiet strength behind the more boisterous front of their siblings or spouse.  They loved making strange and weird snowmen, using random things from around the house.  They both favored wearing raincoats instead of snowgear.

Like mother, like daughter?

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Note from Mao: Lydia is adorable.  She’s a Knowledge sim, if I remember correctly.  Anyway, she and Gregory have chemistry, we’ll see what happens.  Rosa and Lydia really do not see eye-to-eye.  They don’t hate each other, but they don’t particularly care for one another, either.  Most indifferent siblings ever!  Kenya and Hugh both had the want to go on a date, so they did.  Still no boy.  Boo!

January 9, 2009

Anderson 2 – Round 22: ‘The Look of Love, Pt. 4′

Filed under: Anderson — Tags: , , , , , — Mao @ 12:21 am

Kate Anderson may be divorced, but she’s happy to have her son, Hugh, living with her, along with his wife, Kenya, and their children Lydia and Rosa.  It’s the family she never got to have.

Things were definitely busy in the household.  Lydia was already climbing through the ranks of Elementary and seemed to be growing up faster than both Hugh and Kenya thought possible.  Still, she was young enough for a surprise tickle here and there.

Kate was thoroughly enjoying having another baby in the house.  There was just something about that baby smell she couldn’t get enough of.  Things were a little hectic, what with herself, two adults, a child, a baby, and three dogs… but she certainly hoped for just one more grandchild.  Maybe a little boy to mix things up.

Lydia wasn’t concerned with her family expanding, she was too busy enjoying her youth.  She was the one who got the most use out of the pool in the backyard.  She loved being active and swimming was definitely high on her list of favorite things.  She was a bit rough and tumble for a girl, even her best friend Gregory Anderson, had said so… but Lydia didn’t see anything wrong with that.  There were too many girly-girls around anyway.  She’d leave that up to girls like Emma Davis.

Rosa became a toddler, surprising both her parents with fiery red hair.  Neither were quite sure where it had come from, but it definitely made her stand out!  She took after her mother most of all, with her small face and little nose.  She had the brown eyes of an Anderson, though.

While most of the childcare fell to Kenya, as she had given up work to be a stay-at-home mom to her kids, Hugh worked long and thankless hours in various bit jobs.  He wasn’t particularly ambitious and was more concerned with simply having fun and spending time with his family.  Sometimes he juggled, other times he was decked out in armor, serving as entertainment at a themed restaurant.  Nevertheless, he had the same colleagues… ones that would certainly entertain the idea of a little… affair.

Thankfully, Hugh was too busy with his kids to notice.

It was certainly a good thing, because there wasn’t much romance to be had in the house.  Kenya was much too busy trying to keep up with toddler Rosa and Hugh found himself being stuck with odd tasks around the house.  It seemed that little Rosa enjoyed playing ‘clog the toliet’ with rolls of toilet paper.

By the end of the day, they were both exhausted and even then, not alone.  Lydia would sometimes come in and jump on the bed before being shooed off to her own room.  She was a ball of energy.

Rosa soon joined her older sister in elementary school, much to her parent’s relief.  They loved children, truly, but she had been a troublesome little toddler.  Thankfully, she seemed to be a much more somber child.

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Note from Mao: This house was surprisingly hectic.  I was having a fun time trying to keep up!  I think Kenya might be pregnant again, but I can’t be sure.  Kate sure wants her to be.  Poor Kenya and Hugh, though, I don’t know.  They went between fearing and wanting more children!  Oh, and that coworker comes home with Hugh every night.  Sheesh.

December 9, 2008

Anderson 2 – Round 21: ‘The Look of Love, Pt. 3′

Filed under: Anderson — Tags: , , , , , — Mao @ 10:36 am

Kate is happy that her son has found the love of his life and she’s even more overjoyed that they’re having children.  Hugh is thankful for his mother’s help, but he wishes she’d spend more time on herself.

Hugh and Kenya were quite happy with their life thus far.  They were especially pleased with the addition of their baby, Lydia.  It had been a pretty effortless pregnancy, but Kenya was sure she didn’t want to find work and would instead remain home and care for the baby.  Kate had to work and Hugh preferred to give his mother some free time, even if she didn’t want it.

It was a good thing that Kate was around.  Kenya seemed to have fallen sick rather quickly after Lydia was born.  The flu had been going around, both Kate and Hugh had suffered from it briefly.  Kenya felt as if she’d got the worst of it.  It was all she could do to lie on the couch and watch rerun movies on network television.

When Lydia’s birthday came around and Kenya still felt sick, she was sure something else was up.  Lydia was adorable, though she looked more like her father than anything.  Kate loved playing with her and was even less prone to ‘take time off’.  Kenya needed her help, Kate was sure that she wasn’t sick, but pregnant again.  Kate would get the house full of babies she always wanted, even if she wasn’t necessarily the one giving birth to them.

Of course, Kate had been right about Kenya–she was pregnant.  She began to feel a little better, but not much.  Even so, she spent as much time helping and playing with Lydia as she possibly could.  She refused to miss out on her first baby’s first just because she felt horrible.

Even with her stubborn declaration of helping, most of the work still fell to Hugh or Kate.  Kenya was simply too busy eating everything in sight and then trying not to throw it all back up.  This pregnancy was completely opposite of the one she experienced with Lydia.  It was horrible!  Kate joked that it could be twins and Kenya thought that it must if it was such a trial.

Everyone was quite shocked when Kenya returned with only one baby.  It was another girl they named Rosa.  She had red hair and the almond brown Yu eyes.  It was quite startling, especially since she had Kenya’s coloring otherwise.  Old genetics are funny like that, they’ll sneak up when you least expect them.

Lydia became a child not long after, hyper and happy.  She shared her father’s enthusiasm for the dogs, much to Kenya’s chagrin.  It wasn’t that she didn’t like them, but the house didn’t seem big enough for three!  Especially with Lydia running around with them and chasing them all over.  Kenya was forced to tell Lydia to take it outside more times than she cared to and things had certainly been broken since Lydia had grown into a rambuncious youth.

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Note from Mao: Lydia is adorable!  After I loaded their house, Kenya and Hugh immediately went at it on the couch, lol.  Kate was sleeping.  Horrible!  Apparently that was enough to result in Rosa.  I really have no idea how these two are not having twins when they both have the ‘twin’ family benefit.  Very strange.  Rosa’s coloring surprised me.  I’m always glad when those almond brown eyes pop up!

September 22, 2008

Anderson 2 – Round 20: ‘The Look of Love, Pt. 2′

Filed under: Anderson — Tags: , , , , , , — Mao @ 4:32 pm

Kate Anderson is divorced, but she’s happy her only child, Hugh, was able to find the love of his life in Kenya.  Now she’s just biding her time until she’s presented with grandbabies!

Lyra gave birth to a litter of four pups, 2 girls and 2 boys, named Toph, Kitara, Aang, and Sakka.  This meant there were six dogs at once in the small house, most of them all trying to crowd into one room at a time.  Hugh was adamant that they’d give the pups to neighbors, but Kenya found it difficult to avoid not tripping over one of the pups.

Her agitation was mostly due to the fact that she found herself in a family way and her moods were swinging faster than boxing league champ.  Hugh was over the moon, as was Kate, who instantly began converting the former downstairs master suite into a lovely little nursery.  They had also recently begun construction of a pool in the backyard, too.

Kate soon was feeling her age and while most people’s hair gradually shifted to gray or white, Kate’s seemed to happen over night.  She didn’t bother with dyeing it back, she was proud of her soon-to-be status of grandma.  Hugh’s happiness was all she needed, it seemed.  She’d spent her life constantly trying to force her happiness, but all she ever needed was to stop and look to her son.  He was the best thing that could have happened to her.

Kenya spent her maternity leave taking care of the many dogs and trying to keep the house clean.  Roman had been very strict about when she would be returning to work and while she had enjoyed her job, she realized that family was more important to her.  She wanted more children after this and she wasn’t sure if she still had room in her life for the demanding job of manager.

She would discuss it with Hugh and see what could be done.

Kenya also struck up an unlikely friendship with her neighbor, Virginia Saunders.  She was also pregnant and home a lot, so the two had a bond there.  Other than that, they were complete opposites.  Kenya enjoyed Virginia’s companionship, though, and tried to ignore the comments she sometimes made in regards to family lifestyles.

Finally, little Lydia Anderson joined the family.  She had her father’s coloring, her grandma Kate’s brown eyes, and dark hair.  She was adorable and her parents couldn’t stop cooing over it.  Kenya was certain she didn’t want to leave little Lydia in the care of a nanny and so she decided she’d discuss her plans of leaving with her boss.

Hugh, meanwhile, set about giving away the now grown pups to neighbors.  He even managed to get some money for them, thanks to Kenya being home to train them properly.  They were an odd lot, but lovable and surely a good addition to the other families.  Who knows, maybe those pups would go on to have some of their own.

————–

Note from Mao: I was completely expecting TWINS!  Hugh has the final family benefit!  Maybe next time, because now Kenya has it, too.  She needs three kids for her LTW.

August 29, 2008

Anderson 2 – Round 19: ‘The Look of Love, Pt. 1′

Filed under: Anderson — Tags: , , , , , — Mao @ 2:11 pm

Kate is a single mother, but her son Hugh has turned out to be a good kid, even if he ignored going to University.  Better yet, he seems to have a pretty nice girlfriend, too.

Kenya was elated when Hugh visited her at the grocery store.  She ignored the looks from her boss and allowed him to embrace her in the middle of her shift.  They had met a year or two prior and had kept their relationship quiet due to the fact that she had been in college.  She left University and moved to Boreal Springs just to be closer to him.

Now he was an adult and he wanted her to come and live with him.

While she was busy giggling over his childhood room, Hugh surprised her with a ring.  She said yes, of course.  It was what she had been waiting for!  She was happy to find out that he had an actual adult bedroom he had been staying in, though.  She moved in without another thought and met his mother, Kate, who was startled by all of this, but happy for her son.

Kenya was happy to finally have the money to update her wardrobe and let her hair hang freely.  She was a lovely girl, something Hugh reminded her of constantly.  He was so sweet, who wouldn’t have waited?  She had heard stories of his lothario father, but saw no hints of that in her beloved Hugh and so never gave it another thought.  She was too busy planning their wedding and thinking of what to name their children.  She dreamed for her kids to complete college.

She brought with her a black lab named Lyra.  Thankfully, Iorek and Lyra got along famously and everything within the household was harmonius.  Kate’s head was still spinning with how rapidly everything was happening, but what could she say?  She couldn’t deny her son the love he so desperately sought.

Hugh and Kenya were married in the afternoon, under a clear, cloudless sky and in the company of close friends and family.  Hugh was glad to have his father there, and was surprised when his mother even made casual conversation with him.  It was all for his sake, he knew, but he appreciated the effort.

Most of all, he was happy to finally have Kenya.

Hugh was sure he wouldn’t be like his father, he couldn’t possibly love anyone the way he did Kenya.  Ignoring the tension of the guests (Fou-Lu was present and Elena was ignoring him, instead sitting with Michael, her half-brother and getting looks from Shang), the two enjoyed their first married moments together.

Of course, the fact that it was his son’s wedding did nothing to hamper Shang’s romantic pursuits.  Elena Davis had grown considerably since he’d seen her and he had to admit, she was one smoking hot co-ed!  His nephew, Fou-Lu, had been her beau for a long time… but they were broken up now.  There was no harm in a little flirting, something Elena did not decline.

————-

Note from Mao: And so the mysterious blonde’s purpose is revealed!  And Shang, you dog.  What are you thinking?  And Elena, seriously?  SHANG?  Let me tell you that this was purely autonomous and these two were heart farting all over the place.  Poor Fou-Lu, LOL!

August 16, 2008

Anderson 2 – Round 18: ‘Moving On, Pt. 2′

Filed under: Anderson — Tags: , , , , — Mao @ 3:47 pm

Newly divorced, Kate isn’t quite sure how to handle being alone and Hugh’s recent decision not to attend University has her doubting her decision.

It would be a lie to say that Hugh wasn’t upset about his parents’ divorce, but what could he do? It wasn’t his fault or anyone’s, really. He had a brain enough (thanks to Florence) to see that, it was just a bad situation that went too far.

Most of all, he missed his grandma Florence. She had taught him so much and it was because of her that he was able to handle this all in stride. At least he still had Iorek.

He still saw his father–he would visit when Kate was at work. She preferred not to see him and that was fine. Hugh wasn’t angry at Shang, he understood better than anyone you couldn’t deny who you were. He was just certain he wouldn’t be the same.

“Are you happier now, with Katarina?” Hugh asked, surprising him.

“I know it’s kind of weird and hard for you to understand, but yeah,” Shang confided, shrugging. “I’m not the marriage type, I’m not even the monogamy type. We understand each other, we’re the same.”

Hugh sighed, “you’re right, I really don’t get it. I couldn’t imagine sharing someone I loved with anyone.”

“That’s probably a good thing,” Shang laughed. “Your mother would have a heart attack if you turned out like me!”

Kate meanwhile, wasn’t dealing with the transition as easily as her son. She was worried and more than ever, she missed her parents. She had isolated herself from her siblings in her mad attempt to get and keep Shang and now she was alone. It was a crappy feeling. Hugh would leave her soon, too. She was depressing to be around.

She was surprised when Lilith stopped over. She wasn’t quite sure what to say, all she could do was apologize.

“Don’t apologize to me,” Lilith said, rolling her eyes. “You didn’t do anything to me, you did it to yourself, Kate. Did you honestly think the lamp would make everything right forever? Doesn’t work that way.”

“I know, I was stupid,” Kate frowned, ashamed. “I’m just sorry for using you and not listening to you.”

“Eh, it happens, you know? But don’t think you’ll be getting anymore lamps from me!”

Kate laughed, “no, I don’t think I ever want to see another lamp again…”

After her talk with Lilith, Kate was convinced she needed to stop wallowing and confront the issues facing her. She couldn’t let Hugh throw his life away, not with the amount of work he and Florence had put into his education.

“I’m sorry, mom,” Hugh said, looking her straight in the eye. “It just isn’t an option, I know I could go, easily… but I don’t want to.”

“Why?” Kate demanded. “This is your future, Hugh! Not going to college could hurt you for the rest of your life.”

Hugh shook his head, “you just don’t understand, mom. It’s my choice and I’ve made it. You can kick me out if you’d like, but I won’t go. No matter what.”

Kate frowned, “I would never kick you out, Hugh. I just want what’s best for you…”

“Then let me make my own decisions.” He said, leaving to catch the bus. He couldn’t tell her he didn’t want to go because then she would be alone and he knew that was what she feared most. She was his mom, through better or worse, and he couldn’t put her through that.

——————

Note from Mao: Hugh actually has no interest in college. The want stopped popping up after Florence died. And Shang stops by constantly, he doesn’t even ring the bell, just drops in and makes himself at home, lol.

August 3, 2008

Anderson 2 – Round 17: ‘Polyamorous, Pt. 6′

Filed under: Anderson — Tags: , , , , , , — Mao @ 7:40 pm

Florence Anderson has tried hard to keep her family together, but Shaniqua Saunders, their daughter Kate, and her cheating filth of a son-in-law, Shang, hasn’t made it easy. At least Hugh is a shining star amidst all the crap Florence has had to deal with.

“Are you looking for your lamp?” Florence said, confronting her daughter. “It’s gone. I’ve thrown it out.”

Kate was too stunned to speak, “y-you threw it out?!”

“Yes, I did. And I don’t want to see it in this house again. What were you thinking, Kate? What have you used that vile thing to gain?”

Florence didn’t wait for a reply. She simply sighed and said, “even that lamp won’t change who and what Shang is, Kate. And it won’t make you any happier and sure won’t make Hugh turn out all right. He needs a mother, Kate… and you need to fix this mess you’ve made.”

“But I can’t,” Kate frowned, suddenly saddened. No more lamp? What was real without it? “If I don’t have the lamp, I can’t–”

“I shouldn’t have pushed this marriage,” Florence admitted slowly. “It was wrong, but so were you, so is Shang everytime he does something stupid… which is like breathing for that idiot. Oh, Kate, of all the men… why him? He’s no good.”

“I don’t know, but I can’t help it,” Kate sniffed, allowing Florence to hug her. “It’s just not fair, mom. Katarina has the baby… it was supposed to be mine.”

“Don’t worry about her, Kate. Take care of the son you have and for goodness sakes, get that bafoon out of this house before he ruins Hugh.”

Florence wasn’t about to let it pass that Shang had somehow been stupid enough to knock someone else up. She lit into him the moment she saw him downstairs. Poor Shang was so caught offguard he nearly fell backwards. She had interrupted him admiring himself in the mirror. He was a Rock God now and he definitely looked good.

“You selfish little bastard!” Florence roared, backing him into a corner. “I swear, one of these days, I’m going to knock that smirk right off your face!”

“Geeze, chill out,” Shang replied, trying to evade his mother-in-law’s rage. “I don’t even know what you’re talking about, you crazy old bag!”

Before Shaniqua could say, “that really wasn’t wise” Florence pounced on Shang and took him to the ground. Shang was a little more than shocked by Florence’s ability to sweep the floor with him. Truth be told, he spent so much time just looking good that he really didn’t bother much with actual physical strength. Florence beat him up one side of the room and down the other and by the time they were through, Shang thought he needed to be rushed to the ER for possible damage to his face. That bag would pay if he had to cancel the tour.

Ignoring his dysfunctional family completely, Hugh continued his progression towards adulthood. He met and befriended his cousin, Fou-Lu. Hugh wasn’t particularly fond of his girlfriend, though. Elena was a bit too pushy for Shang’s taste. She reminded him way too much of his Aunt Lilith and Aunt Lilith was terrifying to poor little Hugh.

Unfortunately for Hugh, Florence died only a week later. It was heart failure and there was nothing they could do, it was simply her time. As if that weren’t bad enough, Shaniqua fell ill and soon died as well. It was two collective blows the strained family could have done without. Shang was glad that Florence was six feet under, but he didn’t like how upset it had made Hugh.

That wasn’t to be the end of it, though. Since Florence’s death, Kate had made a decision. She and Shang had begun talking about possibly separating or even divorcing. It would be rough on Hugh, especially with the loss of his grandparents, but it was necessary.

“So does that mean I won’t see you anymore?” Hugh asked sadly.

“No, I’ll just be down in Aperture. You can see me anytime you like, even stay, if you want. But your mom needs you here and you need her, too, more than me. We both know that, Hugh, I’m not winning any dad of the year awards.”

Hugh sighed, “it’s gonna be hard… without grandma Florence…”

“You’re stronger than you think, kid. Don’t sell yourself short.”

Kate didn’t like the fact that she had to give up her ‘rights’ to Shang, but what choice did she have? It was like trying to keep a wild animal caged. No matter what she did, Shang would never be faithful to just her. It was a harsh reality that made Kate feel completely and wholly sad.

“Don’t look so broken up, babe. Doesn’t mean we can’t still fool around. Shang is in demand and you can’t expect to keep that demand at bay with a ring.”

Kate frowned, “no, Shang. I’m just not that kind of person… and I’d rather you not be so open about it with Hugh.”

He shrugged, “Hugh will be who he is meant to be… and I doubt it is anything like me.”

And with that, Shang left his home in Boreal Springs and headed off to his swank pad in Aperture. Of course, before arriving, he’d have to stop by the original Anderson house…

—————-

Note from Mao: And so it ends. Poor Kate! She was really tired of catching him cheating. She kept slapping him and fighting with him, almost as bad as Florence! Let us hope Hugh can brave the difficulties and be the grandson Florence hoped he’d be.

August 2, 2008

Yu – Round 17: ‘You Turn The Screws, Pt. 1′

Filed under: Yu — Tags: , , , , , , , — Mao @ 8:33 pm

Tsung and Lilith Yu are happy with their lives, even if they have a few little secrets.  Zhou is ready to get out of the crazy house and head to University while Fou-Lu can’t wait to become a teen.

Lilith was surprised when Kate dropped by for a visit.  She knew it had to be because her younger sister wanted something.  That was the only time she contacted Lilith.  Sure enough, she had questions that needed answers about the lamp.

“It didn’t work,” Kate said, anguished.  “I’m supposed to be pregnant and I’m not.  Katarina had a baby, Lilith.  Shang’s baby.”

“Color me surprised,” Lilith remarked, clearly the opposite.  “Look, Kate, what do you want me to do?  Scold the lamp?  And how do you know it was the lamp’s fault?  You probably weren’t clear enough when you wished.”

Kate blinked.  Clearly she hadn’t thought of that.  “Um… I was!  I’m sure of it.”

“Right, well, maybe you should go.  The last thing I need is mom coming here and yelling at me for giving you the lamp.”

Zhou, meanwhile, was downtown exploring Aperture a bit before heading off to University.  Being a technical adult had given him some freedoms otherwise unavailable.  It wasn’t that great and while he spoke with a few females, none of them piqued his interest.  In fact, some of them were downright ridiculous.  He’d seen River wear some ridiculous things, but that snow leopard hat was a bit much for anyone.

Tsung wasn’t worried about Zhou, he knew that despite having his mother’s attitude, he’d succeed just fine.  Provided he quit bullying everything.  Even Lilith still had that problem.  It was Fou-Lu that made him concerned, the boy spent way too much time on the phone, even for a pre-teen.  When Tsung was a boy, he was doing stuff… not hanging out on the phone all day.  It was almost impossible to receive any calls at home, Fou-Lu was always hogging up the line.

He tried to talk to Lilith about it, but she just laughed and said he was talking to his soon-to-be-girlfriend Elena.  Tsung was puzzled at this.

It wasn’t until Fou-Lu’s birthday came around that Tsung realized who Elena was.  She was Gordon’s adopted daughter.  Tsung didn’t know enough about Elena to judge her suitability for his son and heir, but he was sure that Gordon’s influence on her wasn’t a bad thing.

Fou-Lu couldn’t have cared less what Tsung thought, he was in love.  He and Elena had been close ever since they were children and even if she was a little bossy sometimes, and maybe a bit too driven, he was smitten.

When he wasn’t with Elena–which wasn’t very often–he was hanging out with his friend Basil Saunders.  They enjoyed playing video games together and generally slacking off.  Basil shared his plans to ditch University and just hang out at his house.  Fou-Lu saw some merit to that, but knew that Elena would drop him like a bad habit if he so much as mentioned it, so instead he kept his interest a quiet one and continued beating Basil’s butt into the floor.

——-

Note from Mao: Not much happening here.  Fou-Lu and Elena were only a matter of time, I wasn’t surprised when they had two bolts with zero tweaking from me.  Poor Zhou, he’s still so puzzled over River’s rebuff.  We’ll see how things go in Uni…

August 1, 2008

Anderson – Round 17: ‘Gold Digger, Pt. 1′

Filed under: Anderson — Tags: , , , , , , , , — Mao @ 8:24 am

Alyssa Anderson is newly divorced and has a lot on her plate. Her eldest daughter, Katarina, has returned home very pregnant with the same man Alyssa herself has slept with. Nevio managed to knock-up his girlfriend, Lacie, in University. With a wedding to plan and babies to prepare for, things at the Anderson residence are hectic.

Alyssa wasn’t completely sure how to react to Katarina’s news. The fact that Katarina was pregnant was enough of a surprise, but that it was Shang’s baby? Alyssa felt a little sick inside. Messing around with Shang had been very, very wrong. She could never let Katarina know now.

“Of course you can stay here,” Alyssa said, trying to reassure her daughter. “Just know that Lacie is here, too, until Nevio returns home from University.”

Katarina smirked, “why am I not surprised?”

Nevio came back to the house a few months later to find his sister very pregnant and his soon-to-be-wife just barely showing. Being surrounded by hormonal women wasn’t exactly something he looked forward to, nor did he enjoy the conversations at the dinner table.

“So, am I going to get that big?” Lacie asked, eyes wide. “I hope not, I’ll never get my figure back.”

Katarina ignored the dig and simply said, “it all depends on how big the baby is. I’m actually quite small for how far along I am.”

“It would have been nice if you had told us all sooner, Katarina,” Alyssa interrupted giving her daughter a look.

That night, Lacie took it upon herself to have a talk with Nevio. She was concerned about Katarina being there and was hoping that the eldest child would leave and find her own place to live. It was bad enough Nevio’s mother was still present, but Katarina there threatened her place as head of the house even worse.

“I don’t know when Kat’s leaving,” Nevio replied easily. “She can stay as long as she likes, as far as I am concerned.”

“It isn’t good for us all to be here at once, Nevio. You’re the heir, this is technically now your house. Shouldn’t your sister and mother leave?”

Nevio laughed as if she was joking, “don’t be stupid, Laci. Mom helped build this house, this is her home. She isn’t going anywhere and I don’t want her to.”

Katarina wasn’t quite sure what she thought about her room remaining the same as when she had left it. She had tolerate the uncomfortably small bed and overly pink room for long enough. With the baby coming any day now, it was more than time for a remodel.

She’d have to speak with her mother about it in the morning. Katarina hadn’t planned to stay as long as she had, but she didn’t exactly look forward to being a single mom, either. She hadn’t even told Shang yet.

Of course, Katarina didn’t have to. Alyssa had enough, she knew that it was messy business, but Shang had to know. She phoned him up without Katarina knowing.

“You need to come over, Shang. There’s something you need to… see.”

‘Well, that’s an interesting way of saying it, babe.’

Alyssa sighed heavily, “no, Shang. I told you, that’s over. I’m talking about Katarina.”

‘Kat? Is she okay?’

“Just come over and you’ll see for yourself.”

Katarina was hardly impressed by her mother’s little stunt. She met Shang in her very pink room and let him know that this was not her idea at all.

“I can’t believe she did this,” Katarina sighed, unable to hide her anger.

“I’m glad she did, why didn’t you tell me?” Shang replied, humor gone from his voice. “How long, Kat?”

“It was during the tour, at the island. I came back and well, there it was.”

“Were you ever going to tell me?”

“…I don’t know. I figured it was best you didn’t know and I really didn’t want you seeing me like this. I feel like a beached whale.”

“For being a beached whale, you look pretty hot to me, babe.” Shang replied jokingly, pulling her into his arms and kissing her. “You know I can’t help you out directly… but I wanna be involved, all right?”

“Fine, but don’t get all serious on me about this. It doesn’t change things.”

He laughed, kissing her again, “and that’s why I love you, Kat.”

Katarina gave birth to little James Anderson a few days later. He looked everybit like Shang, only his eyes were big and brown like Shang’s brother’s and his father’s. There was no mistaking it, that much was sure. Katarina idly wondered if he had any of her in him at all. He definitely didn’t look a bit like his namesake would have you believe.

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