jothirteen: (simjo)
[personal profile] jothirteen

(This chapter's title is a reference to A Song of Ice and Fire.)


Welcome back to another chapter of "Hark(er)! An OWBC"!

In the last chapter, the triplets became teenagers, appropriately rolling Popularity (Peri) and Knowledge (Phlox & Pomp). Ruthie, the youngest member of gen 2, became a child, and was largely ignored by everyone except her mother and brother. Lethe and Peri's sibling rivalry intensified (even if still one-sided and met only with vague confusion on Peri's part). Fergus became a vampire, courtesy of his friend Contessa Stephanie Morrison, which allowed him to miss even more important events in his children's lives than before. Lethe, Phlox and Pomp all went on blind dates via matchmaker to fulfil the partial NL bonus in case of heirship (every single one of them being paired up with someone significantly older). Finally, the still-ignored Ruthie had her teen birthday, concluding the chapter and leading into the generation 2 heir poll.



Before we join the main line Harkers this time, let's pay a short visit to the spares:


Bruna, Börje and Yvonne have an empty nest now, since Hector, Lorens and Ravi have all left for college (you'll see them in a while). Since the last time you saw them, Bruna has fulfilled her LTW (Criminal Mastermind) and Yvonne has fulfilled two LTWs (Mad Scientist & max all skills). Börje is still waiting on his (6 grandchildren), but he's also pretty content at the moment.



Oil, as you might know, has also fulfilled her LTW (20 simultaneous lovers). Olenna moved in with her after graduating (Drama major, Summa Cum Laude), and she's currently working on her own LTW (Hall of Famer).



And, as mentioned before, Hector, Lorens and Ravi are at Académie Le Tour, at the same dorm Olenna was in during her time there. Hector (Psychology major) has recently finished his 1st year of college, while Lorens (Physics major) and Ravi (Mathematics major) have just started their very first semester.

Now to the main house...



We start our scheduled episode with Olive having a very important thing to tell her oldest daughter. Meanwhile, in the background, Pomp wonders if he really wants to keep living in this planet; future events might be a great incentive to move...



"So, the polls are now closed, and it was decided you are going to be the new heiress, Lethe."

"Me? Really?"



"Yes, sweetie, congratulations. You can put all your worries about the heirship to rest now...and maybe try to get along with your siblings better. Especially Peri. That would be truly wonderful."

"Oh. All right, I'll...think about it, Mom."





Shortly after the heirship announcement, Lethe departed for ALT (as she was getting very close to the end of her teen years), with several of her family members running to her to say goodbye. Notice that Fergus is included in those. Lethe really must be his favourite child, she was also the only one whose A+s he paid attention to as a child.



"You must be Olive's daughter, right? Nice to meet you, I was chosen as the placeholder by your mother before she graduated, my name is-"

"Don, I know, I've heard of you. You're free to leave now, since I'm here we won't be needing a placeholder anymore."

"Excuse me?"



"I think you knew what I meant. Look, I don't even know you, there's really no need to waste time in polite conversation. You've graduated a while back and were just waiting for someone to arrive here so that you could leave. And now you can. So goodbye, Don. You're dismissed."

"Wow. I don't even have any words. Olive is a good friend of mine, frankly, it's hard to believe she raised a daughter like you. Seriously..."




Still feeling very offended, and likely cursing Lethe under his breath, Kai Truman (aka Don) proceeded to officially leave ALT and head for Bio-Thingy's CAS as the winter snow fell quietly outside.



Meanwhile, Lethe, seemingly unbothered by Kai's reaction at her unpleasant attitude, officially chose Psychology as her major.



And got some new clothes, which didn't contribute one bit to improving her mood.



Pheromone, the ALT gnome, also made a triumphant return, along with a small (for now) flamingo army.



And, as winter was getting close to an end, Lethe threw a house party.

"You have grown up so much since the last time I saw you! It's hard to believe you are at college now."

"Well, we aren't that far apart in age anyway, Aunt Olenna. You're so much younger than Mom and Aunt Oil, and not much older than Hector. And Hector is just a bit older than me, so we're pretty close in age too."

"Flatterer. Say, Lethe...Kai called me this morning after getting installed in his new house. He said that you didn't treat him very well when you arrived here. Why would you do that? Kai never did anything to you, I'd almost swear you had never actually met him in person before coming here..."

"Oh, he was exaggerating. I just told him he was free to leave since I was already here...he's just used to super nice people like you and Mom, I think. That must have been why he sounded upset."



"Nice save, Lethe, but I'd tone it down if I were you. Aunt Olenna might believe you, but your mother won't if she hears stories like the one Don's been telling. I understand perfectly not wanting to be nice to people, you should go ahead and do whatever you like - you're the heiress after all - but at least pick people that aren't best friends with your close relatives. Or else you might get in trouble."

"Very nice advice, Hector, but I don't remember asking for it."

"Suit yourself, little cousin, I was just trying to help."




The party eventually ended with a particularly annoying event - dormie Miguel Beam stole Pheromone as Lethe was inside arguing with her cousin. She eventually sneaked out to have her revenge shortly afterwards, bringing Pheromone back.



As she got used to college life, Lethe noticed that most dormies seemed to be afflicted with an odd sleeping sickness of sorts. Also, most of them weren't very bright, constantly complaining about being hungry or tired, when good food and their beds were so close by. She was surrounded by idiots, that was for sure.

(This is the result of me installing mods to remove the dormies' motive decay, among others. They really can't take care of themselves at all, as you can see. More extreme examples might pop up in future chapters.)



One of the dormies, Vernon Moss, wasn't as helpless as the rest, or at least he didn't seem to be, and he soon started to pay quite a bit of attention to Lethe. With mixed feelings on her part.

"I've heard about what you said to Kai before sending him away, and I now have a theory about you. You're not as mean as you seem to be - or play yourself to be. Maybe you just want people to leave you alone, maybe it's due to insecurity, maybe both, maybe neither. But I think that you should at least try and be a bit nicer to people around you. Being the heiress would be so much easier for you if you were well-liked by most people, Lethe."



"Well, Vernon, I might consider you a friend now, but don't push it. People don't really hate me as much as you think, and the whole Don thing was blown way out of proportion. No need to worry...and I don't really need advice, you know. Everything's going along just fine."



But despite her trying to ignore what Vernon had told her, Lethe could feel his words popping up in her thoughts many times during the semester, which annoyed her to no end.



Her final exam came almost as a relief; at least she was able to stop thinking about Vernon's irritating even if well-meaning advice for some time.



Meanwhile, at the main house, there was a definite lack of simoleons in their account (mainly due to, you know, this being the generation without promotions), and so Phlox got digging duty. She didn't find much, though, only rocks and dog toys as per usual.



Fergus, in one of his rare appearances since he became a vampire, got this generation's Ghost Hunt started by asking his friend Alani Brosnan (yet another of the custom townies) to move in.



Alani here is a Libra 2/8/2/6/7, and a Romance sim with the LTW to woohoo with 20 different sims. She joined the Harker household with a job in the Military career track, 23 skill points, 1000 simoleons and 7 friends.



She also had a bunch of items in her inventory, which were promptly sold. Thanks for the extra simoleons, Alani!



Shortly after moving in, Alani also got her picture taken...and promptly hung on the "wall of death", along with Dustin's portrait and Donna and Reese's pictures.





This particular ghost was pretty easy to collect. Alani didn't even have to quit her job to comply with the no-promotions part of the OWBC, as she got to meet the family cowplant almost immediately after getting her picture placed on the death wall.



"So...that was quick. Sometimes I wonder why aren't you and Mom more upset over getting your friends killed like this."

"OWBC rules, Phlox, you just have to get used to them. And try not to think too much about it."



However, it seems Alani wasn't promptly forgotten by Fergus - maybe there's some guilt there?



Olive managed to ignore the whole thing by meditating on the other side of the garden. Lucky girl.



"Hector told me the other day that Lethe was very angry with Don, the placeholder...because she actually found out what he was using in his famous chili. Had you heard about this, Ruthie?"



"Um...I think Hector was just making up stories, Peri. Kai is not the same person as Don, you know, he doesn't even make chili, and Lethe just likes being nasty to everyone. No mystery there."



"Aunt Yvonne, have you heard-"

"Please don't tell me that's going to be yet another story about Kai and Lethe, kid. Those are all lies and rumors Hector has been spreading around, ignore them. I really need to have a talk with that boy...and maybe with your sister too."



"-and then Lethe sent him away and told him she'd make sure he'd end up in his next prized bowl of chili if she ever saw him around again!"



"Wow, what a story! I really didn't think Kai would be the sort of guy to do something like that, but I guess you never know! Your sister really did the right thing there."



That party was a success, even if it contributed to even more rumors being spread around Bio-Thingy. Olive called both her daughter and Kai that night, as some damage control was clearly needed.



Some time later, a touching moment at the Harker household was witnessed, as Fergus actually showed affection to one of his kids other than Lethe. Aww.



With Lethe gone, Phlox is now in charge of doing Peri's homework. She takes it much better than her older sister, which really isn't a surprise.



"Tomorrow morning, me, Peri and Phlox will head off for college...I have to say I'm worried, Mom. Lethe has become even worse since being chosen as heiress, what if her whole rivalry with Peri intensifies too? I can see our years at ALT being very unpleasant..."



"Oh, Pomp, don't you worry about it. I have talked to your sister, mainly about the whole situation with Kai...but not only that, and I promise you things will get better. I'm sure it won't be nearly as bad as you believe. You might even have four wonderful years there, like me and your Aunt Oil did."



The Harker triplets arrived to the dorm shortly before dawn, with Peri still being blissfully oblivious to everything, and Phlox and Pomp not quite convinced things would go smoothly for them in the near future.



Things were very peaceful inside, though Phlox was very perplexed to find all the passed out dormies and the dozens of cups scattered around the cafeteria.



Pheromone's army, meanwhile, has now grown considerably, with the addition of 9 new flamingos.



Also, I finally get to control Peri (even if it's only 8 commands a day), and after getting her some new clothes, I get to see her personality!

*drumroll*

So, you might or not remember I had theorized she was quite neat (often found cleaning puddles, toilets, etc.), very outgoing (due to finger-gunning) very playful (due to tub pirating), and likely reasonably nice (cheery disposition, frequent smiles). I didn't have much of a clue about her active points, though.

Her actual personality: Capricorn 8/9/1/9/8 (which is wonderfully symmetrical). I was right about most of her stats, even if her lack of active points baffles me a bit - I can't remember seeing her slouching around, though maybe I never checked on her during those moments? (Who knows.)

You might remember she is a Popularity sim - we now know her LTW is to become General. I ended up having her choose Political Science as her major.



Phlox, who is now in charge of growing eggplants (among other plants) for Operation Give the Bad Apple Some Skills (or Operation Successfully Get the Bad Apple to Graduate, whichever you prefer), has Mathematics as her major.



Those eggplants will definitely come in handy - so far, Peri's time at college has consisted on slouching around a bit (see, she does that much more often now than as a teen!) and playing darts in her underwear with a very happy smile on her face.




Pomp gets to entertain the guests during the next party Lethe throws (the season having switched to spring by this time). His major is Philosophy, by the way.

He and his cousin Ravi should get along well, since as you can see, Ravi is yet another nerdy sim.



Not due to any effort on her part, Lethe is rewarded with a memory of throwing a great party.



But I must give her some credit, she really has been doing some work as assignments, term papers and such go.




Sadly, during that same semester, I realize that Pomp is glitched - this is how his room looks like. Even if he's inside, nothing can be seen. So the poor guy has no bed to sleep in, having to resort to sleeping in Phlox's room when she's not occupying it.

His glitch also extended to changing his clothes, though just his everyday clothes for some reason. I did end up using boolprop to change them via Tom's Clothing Tester there, I admit. I hope that's not against the rules, but really, the only thing I did was to change Pomp's clothes, and the clothing tester was sold immediately afterwards - I can't see it being too much of a problem. (Opinions?)



Some commands later, I finally get Peri to finish her term paper for this semester. Hopefully that will improve her grade a little, since there have been pop-ups informing me she's still lacking necessary skill points (and the eggplants will still take a while to grow).



She hasn't been in the best mood either. I often found her complaining about one motive or another more and more as the semester went by. Pomp (and Phlox to a lesser extent) did help out a bit by boosting up her social motive.



"Your siblings seem nice, I really don't get why you complained about them so much. Especially your sister, what is her name...Peri?"

"Vernon, you know what I think about unsolicited advice..."

"Yes, I know. But hear me out, Lethe, just this one time. You have no reason to dislike Peri whatsoever. The main reason your whole rivalry started was because you thought she had it too easy and you did not want her to become heiress...but now you're officially the heiress. You are doing pretty well, but I know Peri is not. I've seen so, and your siblings Phlox and Pomp have told me the same thing. So why not try and mend your relationship? That's never been an issue on her part anyway! She'll appreciate your support...and think of how happy your parents would be too."



"You are definitely the most annoying person I've ever met. Seriously, Vernon, at this point, you've surpassed Peri, and Don, and everyone else. Congratulations."



Surprisingly, some time after her talk with Vernon (even if she supposedly had ignored everything he said), Pomp and Phlox noticed Lethe seemed to be acting nicer towards Peri...or at least she was making an effort.



Lethe also spent some time alone with her thoughts more and more often, though she'd never give any of her siblings a direct reply when asked about it.




Her second semester of college (and the triplets' first) soon came to an end. Phlox and Pomp, as well as Lethe herself, had excellent grades, and Peri did better than expected considering the difficult start she'd had.

(A note: in Portuguese universities, grades go from 0 to 20, which is reflected in the respective version of the game. Peri's grade of 11 for her first semester wasn't that bad, considering she didn't even have all of the required skill points, and I can only give her 8 commands a day.)



Back at the main house, Olive and Fergus have some romantic moments, which have been quite scarce since he became a vampire (he spends most of his time awake stargazing, and so he's frequently offscreen in the story).



Ruthie, always the largely ignored youngest child, had the universe briefly reward her by giving her a day off from school. Hurray for snow days!



Olive still looks after her plants as if they were also children of hers every single day. Maybe that Garden Club hag and her minions will consider her garden good enough in the near future... Fingers crossed, everyone.



This apparently unimportant picture was the best I could get of Olive being notified of how much she had earned selling her recently-completed novel (it was an okay novel, but not a great one, so no memory). So that's two out of four novels already.



The Ghost Hunt is still in progress, as Olive asks an old friend from college to move in. His name is Darryl Astor, and yes, he might not be as recognizable as Don, but those of you who read Candi020765's Uglacy will probably remember him as Gage's dad.



Unfortunately, he rejects the offer. I wonder if dormies and townies have wised up and actually know what their fate in the OWBC household would be.



I also let Ruthie go on a date (even if it's not needed, since only the heir for every generation is required to go on one), because I feel sorry for her, being mostly ignored. Besides, she is a Pleasure sim, and the aspiration points are always a plus.



"Ah, I'm glad to see you're not as cheap as your siblings were, Ruthenium Harker! I shall give you a fitting match, then!"



"Amin Sims? I appreciate the gesture, Ms. Matchmaker, but he's so much older than me..."

"Hush, girl. Just think of it this way: you won't be a teenager forever. You should be thanking me, really."



"I...guess that's okay, then. Nice to meet you, Mr. Sims...Amin...not sure which one you'd prefer-"



"Amin is fine. And don't worry about the matchmaker, she has her quirks, but she can also make great choices. This might or might not be one of them, but we don't know what the future will bring. Maybe when you're at college things will be more clear to you."



Amin and Ruthie ended up having a good if fairly uneventful date (like her siblings' in the last chapter). And no, there are no shenanigans going on here, they took a picture and that was all there was.



This was the only romantic interaction they had during the whole time Amin was around. But still, it was just a peck in the lips. Not too much of a deal.



A brand new day dawns to reveal brand new gnomes scattered around the Harkers' garden. You probably know what this means...



...yes, it's time for yet another Garden Club inspection! And yes, I'm giving center stage to the smustling teen townie, Russell Kilroy, instead of the actual Garden Club members here - it's not like they deserve it.



Speaking of poor, unfortunate Russell, he was also silly enough to try and pet the skunk like Peri in the last chapter. When will these kids learn?



The Garden Club inspection is still in progress when Olive gains the ability to teleport during her meditation. At least now she can get rid of those pesky weeds in the ghosts' island.



Ruthie also helps her mother out with some last-minute gardening...



...but once again, Tiffany Zarubin is not amused by the flamingos. Even if there are only 9 of them around now. She is really starting to get on my nerves.

Oh well, better luck next time, Olive...




Olive has better luck the next day, not as gardening goes, but in regards to the Ghost Hunt. Darryl is fearless (or foolish) enough to agree to move in this time.



Unlike Alani, he gets a makeover (as his death won't happen that soon). His stats: he is a Libra 2/8/2/6/7, and a Romance sim, with the LTW to become Hall of Famer. He joined the household with 21 skill points, 17000 simoleons and 9 friends.

And, if you're wondering: I have absolutely nothing against Romance sims and/or sims with the Libra zodiac sign. The fact that 3 of the Ghost Hunt sims so far (Reese, Alani, Darryl) have been both is just a perhaps unfortunate coincidence.



We wrap up this chapter with Darryl's picture being added to the wall of death (insert scary music of choice here for maximum effect). Your days are officially numbered, my friend.


Next time, more shenanigans at ALT await us, as well as progress towards the nine total deaths of the Ghost Hunt. The ever-infuriating Garden Club might also make an appearance. Until that time, goodbye and happy simming to you all!




[Note: Lethe, Peri, Phlox and Pomp have all been added to the "Download a Harker" entry.]





***


Current challenge stats:


Base Game Bonuses:

-Obtain an alien through a legit abduction

-Go one whole generation - from birth to birth - without getting any promotions

-Have a gnome to guard the flamingos [Glycogen, with Pheromone standing in for him at ALT]


Nightlife Bonuses:

-The heir(ess) for every generation must go on a date via gypsy matchmaker and see it through to completion [1st generation: Olive's date with Fergus; 2nd generation: Lethe's date with Sean; ...]

-Every heir(ess) is turned into a Grilled Cheese sim [1st generation: Olive; ...]

-A sim must be turned into a vampire [Fergus]


Seasons Bonuses:

-Throw a party once per season [spring: Nisha and Cody's wedding, Olenna's toddler birthday, 5 house parties (2 at college), Ruthenium's toddler birthday; summer: Börje & Bruna's toddler birthday, 4 house parties (1 at college), Ruthenium's child birthday; autumn: Olive & Oil's toddler birthday, 6 house parties (2 at college); winter: 5 house parties (3 at college), Olive's graduation, Olive and Fergus' wedding]

-Earn a wishing well

-A sim must be turned into a plantsim


Story Bonus:

-Finishing the challenge and posting it online [work in progress]


"Boolprop Naming Scheme" Mini-Challenge:

-First generation: children resulting from the 3 mandatory pregnancies must have names starting with B, O and O respectively [Börje & Bruna, Olive & Oil, Olenna]

-Second generation: children resulting from the 3 mandatory pregnancies must have names starting with L, P and R respectively [Lethe, Peridot & Phlox & Pomp and Power, Ruthenium]

-Third generation: children resulting from the 3 mandatory pregnancies must have names starting with O, P and C respectively


"One Bad Apple" Mini-Challenge:

-Every generation, one child (chosen at birth) must be uncontrollable (they get 8 commands at day from college/adulthood onwards) [1st generation: Bruna; 2nd generation: Peridot; ...]


"Cowforbrains' Ghost Hunt" Mini-Challenge:

-Three sims must die every generation, and every cause of death must be different [1st generation: Dustin (death by starvation), Donna (death by fire), Reese (death by drowning); 2nd generation: Alani (death by cowplant), ...]


"Family Scrapbook" Mini-Challenge:

-Every member of the family must have their picture taken or their portrait painted and hung somewhere around the house [Nisha, Cody, Börje, Bruna, Olive, Oil, Olenna, Dustin, Reese, Donna, Fergus, Lethe, Peridot, Phlox, Pomp and Power, Ruthenium, Alani, Darryl, ...]

-The founder and each one of the 3 heirs/heiresses must write a novel [Nisha, Olive, ...]


"Workaholics Anonymous" Super Mini-Challenge:

-Earn all the career rewards available [16 out of 20: 2 earned by Cody, 2 earned by Reese, 2 earned by Börje, 2 earned by Bruna, 1 earned by Donna, 3 earned by Fergus, 2 earned by Olive, 2 earned by Oil]

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