Could you be homeless if you had land? Arturo wondered, and not for the first time. Perhaps he was “houseless.”
His life had not improved in some aspects. Days he spent sometime combing the island for fruits to eat, samples to sell, and trying not to fall asleep on his face or worse, pound his thumb with the hammer. He knew he couldn’t afford that medical bill.
Sometimes he found a sheltered spot under a bush to sleep. They weren’t any better than benches, but there were fewer passerbys and distractions. More insects though.
Nights were better. After dropping off the samples and collecting his pay he’d head into town. There were several bars and nightclubs in town where he could slip in with a group and find food, warmth, and shelter. Not that Windenburg was plagued with bad weather. Everyday sunny and fair. But it wasn’t called “Wind”enburg for nothing.
It was at the bars and nightclubs where Arturo would have his single meal of the day.
He preferred fish and chips since it was greasy and filling. As long as he didn’t have to catch the fish, it was the cheapest most filling meal he could order.
So at night, he drank and danced and tried to forget his problems.
Arturo loved this song. Another One Bites the Dirt. He closed his eyes and let the music take him, take him away from wondering where he was going to sleep or how long he was going to struggle to make even a single simoleon.
The song ended and he opened his eyes. He was staring straight at young woman nearby. And she was watching him. He flushed.
“Arturo.” He moved off the dance floor and went to get another drink. He took a deep gulp of his IPA. He just knew he must have looked so stupid.
“I meant it, you know,” she said sliding into the stool next to him. “I love Freddie Celsius too.”
She ordered a drink. They sat in silence. Arturo couldn’t help sneaking a glance at her. She seemed friendly, but he didn’t have much experience talking with girls.
Bella caught him looking. “You visiting?”
“Ah, no. I just moved here. I live on the island.”
“Oh, that’s awesome, I’ve always wanted to live there. We don’t get a lot of new residents, Windenburg is kind of a tourist town. So I guess, I should say welcome!”
Turns out it wasn’t that hard to talk to girls. They chatted about music and the town and eventually she dragged him back out to dance. After several more beers, Arturo had lost his initial shyness.
“5 minutes,” the DJ announced. “Last song.”
“Come on,” Bella said with a smile as the song wound up. “You’re tilting, I’ll take you home.”
“No,” Arturo said, panic cutting through his buzz. “I – I’ve got to go upstairs.” He smiled. “Break the seal and all that. You go on ahead.”
He fled upstairs and waited. Eventually when he didn’t return she left. He sighed and sat down on the couch.
The best part of this club wasn’t the cheap fish and chips, it was that some of the bartenders would let him sleep on the sofas upstairs. It made for a semi-comfortable night, as long as he didn’t think about what else folks might do there besides sleep.
The next night, Bella invited him out to the Llama’s Tavern. He hadn’t been there before, it was a quieter place than the nightclub. A sports bar, Arturo noted and there was a game going on. He spotted Bella at a table and waved.
She was watching the TV and didn’t see her. So he ordered a hummus plate and once it arrived, he sat down next to her. He didn’t think she’d see him yet.
“Oohyeah! And the knights put it in the pocket!” she crowed. Arturo glanced at the TV but whatever had happened had already been replaced with the face of the newscaster.
Bella turned to face him. “Hey, Atruto! You made it out to my part of town.”
“Good game?” He knew nothing about sports, but she seemed happy.
“The best! You a Llama fan too? The Knights really screwed up that last play.”
“Never really watched either of them.”
“Ah, don’t worry, you’re a guy. Understanding sports is in your DNA.”
“So, what’s up? I mean, on the phone it sounded like you had some news.”
“Great news, in fact.” She beamed. “You were telling me that you don’t have a job yet, right?”
He nodded. He hadn’t drunk that much last night.
“Well, my cousin, Rosa works for Blue Records and I was telling her about you and how you’d just moved here and liked music and were looking for a jog and she told me that Blue Records was looking to hire.”
Arturo couldn’t believe his luck. Blue Records has been the label for Freddie Celsius. It was his dream to work for Blue Records. He hadn’t realized they were in town.
“Not musicians,” she cautioned, “but I figured you might want to apply. At least it’s in the right field?”
“Oh, I’m interested.” Arturo said eagerly. A job! A real life job. With paycheck? He could practically feel the nylan of his new tent under his fingers. “Who do I talk to?”
“They’re taking online applications, but my cousin is close with the boss-man and she said she’d put in a good word for you.”
“Bella, that is the best news I’ve heard since my aunt’s letter.”
The public library had a computer and Arutro headed there early the next day. It was hard to sleep in when the sun shone directly into your eyes. As he waited for the computer to be free he tried cleaning himself up in the library’s bathroom. It was probably almost time to hit up the gym again, although 20 simoleons was hard to spend in one sitting. If he got this job though, he’d be able to afford the showers there.
He found the application and spent the day preparing his resume. It was painfully brief, but he hoped his enthusiasm would at least get him an interview. He didn’t care what position they gave him, if he could work for them, it would be all his childhood dreams come true.
Either his enthusiasm was enough, or Bella’s cousin was very influential. He didn’t even wait half a day before the call came. Orientation in two days.
He made other friends, as well, usually at the Waterfront Nightclub. Arian called him the night before his first day of work and invited him to the Bluffs.
“It’ll be a huge party. Lots of girls, you know. What better way to celebrate your new job.”
Arturo agreed. It wasn’t like he had anything better to do.
Arian was right, there were lots of girls at the party, but Arturo wasn’t in the mood for flirting, so he sat back and watched instead. Letting the music wash over him.
Tomorrow he would get his first paycheck. Would it be enough to buy him a tent? He figured building anything was out of the question for now. But to have a place to sleep and get away from the sun? Maybe he could even afford that travel shower at the camping store. Then he wouldn’t need to visit the gym for showers.
Lost in though, he almost missed her arrival. She didn’t stick around to dance, instead she headed straight to the pond. Arturo couldn’t help but follow.
Author’s Note: I’ve been addicted to this legacy since I started. There’s something really fun about beginning a legacy when you have absolutely nothing and everything is such a struggle. Arturo is actually a random sim, beyond his carefully crafted look. When the name “Arturo” came up, I knew it was perfect. I met an Arturo once and he was the type of guy who knew exactly how attractive he was. It seemed perfect for this particular sim.