They say that time flies when you’re having fun. And that was definitely true of Tracey and my university years. It seemed like just the other day we were both fresh faced first years and now we were packing up our rooms and saying goodbye.
Tracey was moving back to San Myshuno, she’d gotten an internship with inSpire, the local paper as their newest Food Cart Critic to take advantage of the newly booming industry. I’d been accepted to an accelerated masters program at Foxbury. I know, what you’re thinking. As a Britechester alum, I’m supposed to hate Larry the Lobster with undisguised passion, but that’s more a soccer thing. Among the SimScuffle teams, the Garden Gnomes are our main rival.
I had a small place back in Willow Creek, so I didn’t have to continue the sad single dorm life. Instead I got to commute and back home, it was just me and King. That was my least favorite thing about Britechester, their no-pet policy.
It wasn’t very easy just the two of us in a tiny shack. But tiny shack’s are the Drifter way. And King tried curling up really small so he’d take up less room. It didn’t work, but I wasn’t going to tell him that.
And I wasn’t lonely, not with King around. Plus Tracey visited frequently. I ended up giving her a key and she helped out by watching King sometimes when I had late classes. I could leave him alone, but I think Tracey was just as happy to spend time with King as he was to have someone around all the time.
Late that spring, as I was cramming full time for my finals, I met Dax. I was taking a walk with King around the park to get away from the house and my books. He and I started chatting and we hit it off really well. Plus he was even better than I was a chess. (I still beat him hands down at SimScuffle, but I wasn’t Captain of the Breitchester SimScuffle team for nothing!)
Dax had a young son, Theodore (Ted or Teddy to us all) and I was pleased that King got along so well with Ted. It would have put a major damper on Dax and my relationship, if the two had disliked each other or if Ted had been scared. King was a big dog after all. When Ted and Dax moved in, it was like they’d always lived here.
Dax and I got to talking. Dax had been adopted as a child and wanted to provide a home for other kids like him. Ted was eager for siblings as well and was fully onboard. I talked with my Uncle Blaze and Uncle Gengi. Together they had adopted three children and I wanted to ask about what the paperwork and process was. They fully supported us and even agreed to be our references on our application form.
Then disaster struck right as we were getting somewhere with all that red tape. Death struck our house, twice. First King died. I’d known King almost my whole life. We’d gotten him when I was in second grade and apart from my years at University, we’d never really been apart. But he was 16 years old. Often, late at night, it felt like he never left me.
But then morning would come and I’d expect his furry face and yips as I filled his bowl…and they never came. Death’s second visit was even worse, my father died. I mean as a daughter, I expected it, but I also didn’t, couldn’t’ image the world without him. And yet here it was and I knew I would never again hear a knock and open my door to see my silly, lovable father come to check on his grand-kids. He never got the chance to even meet most of them.
After that we put plans to adopt on hold while we grieved. It wouldn’t have been right to bring a child into such sadness and as a whole, we were hardly fit to tend to our own needs much less a helpless infant. But time passes quickly, even in sorry and before we knew it, Ted was heading off to kindergarten, and then first grade.
He was such a social child, always running up to strangers walking their dogs, and bringing home what felt like hordes of classmates. But he also was doing well in school. So when he brought home his first A+ report card, we bought home Frufru.
FruFru was nothing like King and that was good for my heart as I still missed King daily. Frufru was a little button of a dog, and where King was loyal and brave, FruFru is a bit of a spazz and a ditz. And since sadness and happiness comes in pairs, we got news that our family application was accepted and we were approved to adopt little Tess. We only just decided again to pursue our dream of adopting and then our house transformed overnight with giggles and yips.
I would have guessed our hearts would have been as full as our house after that. But I learned quickly that love doesn’t fill up a heart. Love expands the heart to fit however much you ask it to carry. There is always room for more love and more joy. We talked to Ted and Tess to make sure they were okay with our plan to leave our house open to further opportunities with the agency.
It wasn’t long before the agency called again. Another child, a little boy, was in desperate need of home as the paperwork had fallen through with another family and they didn’t want to keep him in foster care too long. We said yes with hardly a thought. I was working as a regular anthologist for several publications at the time and while it wasn’t a lot of money, it was more than enough to welcome Alfonso.
Alfonso made that Christmas unforgettable and changed our house for the better.
Game Note: Just yesterday, I finally figured out how I wanted to frame this generation’s story. I’m not quite done playing yet but I’ve got the next chapter figured out. The challenge this generation is:
- Build a 5 bedroom, 2 bathroom house for §50,000.
- Adopt three children on your 1st, 2nd, and 3rd promotions. (Done)
- Including your heir, each child must complete a different childhood aspiration.
- Emery must reach the top of her writing career.
Dax came with a MCCC toddler from some random lady (MCCC refuses to tell me) so I decided after her first promotion, that them moving in would could as adoption 1. For both Tess and Alfonso I did the regular infant adoption as required. But as Alfonso joined our home , I stopped playing this household (Eco Lifestyle is my only excuse). And I messed up my game.
I forgot that I wanted to set the gameplay to “Age only current household” and while I was playing my Selvadora Drifter and my Eco Drifter, this family (and Tracey’s!) aged up by mistake. So I never got any pictures of baby Alfonso. He was a toddler when I returned and you can’t age toddlers back down to burrito baby objects. (They also can’t drink youth potions if you were wondering.) So I did the best I could to fix their ages and just played from there. Of course as I have chosen to write the story from the screenshots, I can do whatever I want to make a better story, so Alfonso was a toddler in need of a home in the story.