Author’s Note #1: So, at this point, some major disasters reared their ugly heads in my game. My game, which never crashes, did. Followed by a succession of Error 12’s. And finally, a meteor strike. Through all of this, I lost Liev’s parents twice, the house three times and Mango once. (On a side note, you should have seen Mango’s face when he saw the meteor. He was like, “Ooooh, pretty!” Then, kablooey! It seemed to come as quite a shock to him when he died.)
I could have cried. After reinserting Liev’s parents back into the story and seeing them get killed by the meteor and after having rebuilt and remodeled the house so many times only to see the meteor destroy it again…. I just couldn’t go on with it. Clearly, the game was trying to tell me something.
It did occur to me that I didn’t have to save the game after the meteor strike and I could just pretend it never happened. But in the end, I came to the conclusion that I am merely an observer and teller of tales. So, I decided that this was something that actually befell our characters; it was going to be reflected in the story in some way.
After I finally made that decision, I went back and did some slight re-writing of previous chapters before they were published to reflect Mango’s future absence. To my delight, this has created a new mystery for the story! It may not be solved until a future generation, but it’s exciting to me, just the same. Because of all of this, I’ve had to cut out some of the material I had planned which may make it appear that the sims have aged a little faster than they should have. I apologize for any disappointment this may cause.
Okay, fasten your seat belt because here we go full steam ahead!
Well, I’m a full-fledged adult now. And this is where we live. It’s been so long, you’ve probably forgotten all about me. But, I dug you back out for a reason. I need you now more than ever, Journal. It’s my plan that you should keep me sane once again.
You probably heard about the meteor strike and the fire that came afterward. There’s nothing quite like losing everything you own to make you realize what’s really important in life. Thank goodness for my inheritance and insurance because without them, we’d probably be living in a cardboard box.
Things got so weird almost immediately following the meteor. Scientists descended on our lot like a swarm of busy bees, collecting samples and shooing us away. When Liev asked what the deal was, he was told this was protocol after such an event.
So, here we are now after several months in a hotel.
As it is, this is a pretty nice place to live. It’s near the kids’ school but not in the city. We were forced to sell the livestock which about broke our hearts but the animals just wouldn’t have the right kind of life here.
Last time you saw Leonardo , he was a rambunctious little toddler.
Now he’s a rambunctious child. More about that in a minute. He takes most of my time, so believe me, you’ll hear plenty about him.
Jilly was a strikingly pretty little toddler with a shock of thick, black hair. My little Snow White, remember?
This is her now. She’s still the apple of my eye. And she covers for her brother quite a bit. Again, more about that later.
Jillian Day likes to be herself. She’s precocious, well-mannered and a bit on the quiet side. When she gets going (usually to defend Leo), she can be quite animated.
The younger twins are now toddlers and as sweet as ever.
This is Daylynn.
And this is Rachel.
Rachel is not usually this clingy. She only really gets this way when she’s tired. I have to say, though, that I really don’t mind. With how fast my first set of twins entered and exited the toddler stage, I know I need to hold these little twin girls as much as I can because I won’t be able to in just a short while.
I’ve gone through some changes for the better. I know, I know, it’s called growing up and maturing. But for me, it’s more than that. Since Liev’s mother enlightened me about postpartum depression, I’ve been feeling loads better. I see my doctor regularly and now that I know what the problem is, I can deal with it.
I’ve also thought more about forgiveness and what it means to me. I can say that Keniesha and I are on the road to recovery for real this time. I can’t wait until next weekend because she and the twins are coming over for a barbecue.
Liev is still really into his music. He went back to work as a P.I. since there is no longer a farm to take care of. In the evenings, we like to gather around the piano.
Liev has been giving Leo piano lessons and it seems like Leo really has a knack for music as well.
Check this out!
My first published work. I know it looks goofy, but it really seems to fit the essence of …. me. Crazily enough, it’s gotten a good reception. I’ve been told that it “relates” to people. So, I guess I’m not the only clueless person out there.
With some encouragement from my editor, I’ve been working on my next book. I feel like I have plenty of stories in me, I just have to find the time to write them.
There are a few other things I need to catch you up on, Journal. The biggest thing is the terrible news that Mango disappeared. Into thin air, it would seem.
I finally had the chance to talk to Keniesha about my fears that she and Mango had been having troubles. She admitted this was true… to an extent.
Turns out the kind of troubles they’d been having were not the sort I had imagined. I thought for sure there was another woman. But Keniesha denied this quite firmly. She explained that Mango had gotten into some sort of predicament.
I tried talking to her about it again on the phone tonight. “What do you mean ‘predicament?'”
She sighed. “I’ve tried to explain but it’s hard when I don’t know what I’m even talking about.” There was a long pause. I knew if I kept quiet, she’d eventually continue. She just needed time to put her thoughts together. “Memphis, I’ve never told anyone this… but one night, I had just gotten the twins down to bed and I overheard him on the phone.”
Here it comes, I smugly thought as if I knew everything there was to know. She heard him on the phone with a woman, sounding too familiar.
“It was weird… he wasn’t speaking English.”
This surprised me. Mango acted sometimes like he barely had a grasp on combining words into simple sentences in English, how could he possibly be able to speak in another language? “Well, what was it? Spanish or German or something? French?”
“No…. no, it wasn’t anything I recognized. It was strange sounding.”
“Did you ask him about it?”
“Of course. He said he was talking to his grandmother and that she didn’t speak English. But he didn’t explain what language they were speaking. I don’t know… it seems like there was a lot he was keeping from me.”
It sure did seem that way. Keniesha had noticed other things here and there, too. She said that one thing about him that really bugged her was that every time they passed by a window in town or a mirror, he would stop and stare at himself. I could have told her that he’d always been just a little too in love with himself, but that wouldn’t have helped her now.
And, of course, they had started arguing. I mean… ARGUING. He wouldn’t eat anything she cooked even if she’d managed not to burn it. She couldn’t stand how picky he was. And there were times he would leave for hours on end even when he had a day off but he wouldn’t tell her where he’d been. Over time, he had gotten really secretive in general.
Another woman was all I could think of. But she really didn’t think so and I reckon she knew him best.
And then, he’d disappeared. Not long after the meteor struck. Just. Like. That. Like he’d never existed at all.
The police had never found a clue. No one at work knew anything. And Liev, who was the best bet we had of finding him, hadn’t had any luck either.
“I’m so sorry, Sis,” I empathized.
We spoke for a while longer and then I realized the kids hadn’t been told to go to bed yet.
When I went upstairs, I heard one of the kids messing around with the faucet in the bathroom. I believe I mentioned earlier that Leo is a handful. Quite the corker. He likes practical jokes.
“What are you doing?” I asked as I knocked on and opened the door.
Leo, barely able to contain himself, had obviously been up to something. And it didn’t take a genius to figure out what.
“Hey, Ma, do you need to wash your hands?”
As soon as I saw the faucet, I knew he’d booby trapped it to spray all over as soon as it was turned on. This kid must think I was born yesterday.
“Leonardo Prescott Capra! Now your dad is going to have to fix the faucet! Why do you constantly do stuff like this?”
His face turned red but I could tell he was biting his lower lip to keep a smile from curling his lips. “I thought it’d be funny.”
“Well you thought wrong, young man!”
“It was just a joke,” he grumbled.
“Well, it’s not funny! How many times do I have to tell you to quit these pranks of yours? Honestly!”
Realizing that getting all worked up was getting us nowhere, I took a deep, cleansing breath and put my hand firmly on his shoulder. “Listen. You have to stop doing things like this. It is just unacceptable.”
“I’m sorry, Mom.”
And if I didn’t know him better, I would have believed him.
I sent him to bed then checked on Jilly.
“Why aren’t you in your pajamas?”
She looked at me very seriously. “Well, I knew Leo was going to be in big trouble and I figured I should stay dressed in case we needed to get out of here quick.”
“Oh yeah. In case we needed to get out of here quickly,” she said brightly.
I couldn’t help but smile a little. “You know, you don’t have to always come to Leo’s rescue when he’s naughty.”
“Well, I do so!” she claimed.
This was a hopeless battle. “I love you, Jilly,” I said as I gave her a big goodnight hug and sent her to bed.
It may seem like I’m being hard on Leo. But that child…. if there is an adventure to be had, or a scheme to try, he’s totally on it.
A list of things he’s done recently? I’ll show you but a few….
Exhibit A: He painted his sister’s purple bike white. Even the seat. Come to find out, Liev had been painting the fence and had left the bucket of paint and his brush out to answer the phone. That’s all the time it took.
“I dunno, something came over me,” Leo said each and every time he was asked why he would do such a thing.
He stole a street sign which we found in our garage.
He was pretending to be in prison and made tally marks across my walls.
He was pretending to live in a haunted house and partially boarded up his bedroom windows. Thankfully, Liev heard the pounding of the hammer and caught him before he could finish the job.
We don’t know where he got this parking meter or how he got it here, but there it is in his room.
Leo loves tracking mud all over the place.
I clean it up.
He tracks it in.
I make him clean it up.
He tracks it in.
Another day has passed since starting this entry. Today, instead of working on my book, I had to go to the school to pick Leo up because he’d gotten into another fight. And he had the black eye to prove it.
He provided his typical excuse yet again when asked why he did this and what the fight was about.
“I dunno, something came over me.”
And Jilly? She’s his partner in crime. The cover up; the silent partner. The witness who swears he didn’t start it. They are in cahoots, those two.
Author’s Note #2: The book generator can be found HERE. I came across it by accident and couldn’t resist using it. The only thing that was a problem was trying to decide which book fit Memphis best because it came up with a few that I really thought were funny.