Some Subtle Subterfuge

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

School had become increasingly tense since Emerald and Travis had decided to become a "hallway couple". You know, the ones holding hands nonchalantly by their lockers, giving passing kisses while on the way to their separate classes, and cuddling in a corner while nibbling on lunch before the bell rang.

Okay... perhaps not so tense for Travis or Emerald, but certainly tense for Bradley Kane.

Since Bradley had entered grade school and discovered Emerald Greenwood, he had instantly fostered a crush for her. As time passed they became best friends, and a simple crush had blossomed into something much, much more. But for fear of spoiling it, for moving too fast and plowing lightning speed through a relationship that he wanted to last a century, Bradley had let her slip right through his fingers... right into his brother's hands.

Angry at himself, his brother, and his almost lover, Bradley Kane had decided it was time to set things right, to fix the errors he'd made in whatever way possible; but, some things are simply beyond control... some things have unforseen consequences that cause everlasting regrets.




Ever since Emerald had almost evaporated from Bradley's social life, he had turned into a bit of a recluse. When he and Emerald had become close, Brad had actually formed the courage to form a few other close friendships -- but ever since he'd been forced to watch his brother and the girl he loved doting on each other at school, and even their home, he'd begun to neglect everything that reminded him of her.

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He began pouring his time into his inventions: hours and hours he spent studying the masters, hours and hours he spent reading on logic and science, and hours more beating his failed doobob's to bits, pretending they were Travis's head.

While Bradley realized that his frustration and anger was having some incredible results on his progress towards achieving something 'great', nothing satisfied him... Nothing *could* satisfy him.

Nothing but her.

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But "her" was off, busy with someone else.

Under the pale light of the humming streetlamp, Emerald thought she was beginning to see something more than 'comfort food' in this relationship with Travis. He wasn't the stereotypical handsome, but that's never what she was interested in -- he was strong-willed, self-empowered, and never afraid to speak his mind. Even though it was the exact opposite of Bradley, she was beginning to like what she saw.

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They certainly did different things than what she and Bradley used to do together... like go to see games at the stadium...

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... or.... well.

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... forget about seeing games at the Stadium.

He was spontaneous. Emerald couldn't guess what Travis was going to do next... and even if he wasn't perfect, she did actually liked it.

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Travis, on the other hand, had different things on his mind.

"I had a lot of fun tonight, Travis," Emerald said as they cuddled up on the front porch outside the house, looking up at the twinkling starlight above. "I know this was kind of a change in direction for both of us, but I think I'm actually pretty happy about it."

"Mmmhm."

"Don't you have anything else to say?"

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"Well," Travis said with a quirky brow as he pulled her closer. "I don't have many words, but I could sure as heck show you..."

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She was nice to have in his arms, but Travis couldn't help feeling guilty; here she was, spilling out her feelings for him, and he couldn't say the same. In truth, he could touch her because she felt like Jade... Kiss her because she tasted like Jade... hold her because she smelled like Jade...

The only thing he could not do was gaze directly into those eyes: she may look like Jade, but her eyes, they were not hers. They were of a girl he didn't really know, and wasn't really sure about, yet.


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"Guys, are you ever going to come inside? It's well past eleven, and you have school tomorrow," Meredith grumbled as she walked outside to find them snuggling on the bench.

"Awww, but mooomm," in sync, they both seemed to complain. School was for losers!

"Don't even bother trying to argue with me, kids. Emerald, the guest bedroom's all made up for you. Don't make me need to padlock your doors either, or you'll be sorry..." Rolling her eyes, Meredith walked back into the house so they could say their goodnights'.


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Emerald thought it was a bit ironic what Travis' mom didn't know about how much action this room had seen -- even more ironic, because even Emerald hadn't the faintest -- but seeing that painting on the wall only helped to remind her how much comfort that night had brought, when her frustrations with Brad had led her to someone who was actually willing to step their game up.

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But as she settled down to sleep, she wondered... Had it really been the right thing to do?





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The next morning, Emerald woke up to the smell of waffles, and the ice-cold presence of Bradley at the dining table. "Hey, Brad," she said as she pulled out the chair to sit.

"Morning Emerald," he responded: nicely enough, minus the fact he wouldn't look up to speak to her.

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"Brad, I've been doing some thinking, do you think we could ta--"

"Morning, guys!" Travis' voice came loudly from the stairs as he bounded down after his shower. "How IS everyone this wonderful day!"

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Travis came back to the table from the fridge with one of Amelia's leftover cupcakes, and afterwards went straight to licking the frosting right from the plate.

Emerald was... a little repulsed. Bradley had been right in the things he used to say about his brother; Travis was a bit of a slob.

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It seemed that no matter what, she was stuck between the choice of two boys that weren't perfect, just for different reasons. Did she just have too high expectations? Was it a choice of the 'lesser evil'? If it was... had she made the right call?

Too many questions, with no good answer: such is the life of a teenager.





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After school, as Travis headed off to baseball practice and Emerald went to try to be supportive, the other two Kane and Greenwoods were having a totally different sort of meeting.

"You wanted to talk to me?" Jade asked as she settled down onto a seat next to Brad, thankful that the bus was mostly empty except for them -- she didn't want to get caught red-handed talking to this geek.

"Yeah, but I'd prefer to do it somewhere a bit more prviate... can I ride home with you and talk to you at your house?"

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"Fine," Jade responded, still looking a little paranoid and anxious next to him. "I have to leave for work shortly though, how long is this gonna take?"

"Not too long... It's about Travis."

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The rest of the bus-ride was silent, but Brad could tell that just bringing up his brothers' name had had an impact on her. That alone was reason enough to shed a little hope on his plan.

When they got to the Greenwood house, Jade was still avoiding Bradley's gaze. "Jade... Tell me how you feel."

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"Horrible," she said with a sigh as Brad  tried to comfort her. "I made a stupid, stupid mistake. Thomas has always been so persuasive and crude, and he exploited the fact we never got closure when we broke up to get a little snookie behind Travis' back. I'm not saying it's not my fault, but if I could take it back..."

"What if you could?" Bradley asked. "What if you convinced Travis that you could stay loyal to him, that everything was just a big misunderstanding? Do you think you could talk him out of gently ending his relationship with your sister? He's just leading her on, because he's still hung up over you."

"How do you know?"

"I'm not stupid. I know my brother, and he doesn't like girls like Emerald. He doesn't even know her. He likes girls like you. Travis just thinks she's like you, and... she's not."

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"I'll think it over," Jade said afer a moment of thought. "He doesn't trust me, he has no reason to believe me. But, I don't want him to hurt Emerald, either. It'd just be better for all of us if we were actually with who made us happy, instead of settling for less."

Brad agreed with a solemn nod. "Just make sure he does it right, okay? I don't want her to get hurt because he's a jerk and doesn't know how to think with his brain."

"I'll make sure," Jade said with a serious, straight face. "I promise."

18 comments:

M.J. August 18, 2010 at 12:41 AM  

Oh, Poor Emerald. Travis, how could you? I was hoping that Brad would try to get Emerald Back by himself too. Great update and pictures, like always.

Kaleeko August 18, 2010 at 12:49 AM  

Thank you, MJ!

Brad has no shining armor or a white horse to ride in on (and probably wouldn't even if he did), but he's finally prepared for a relationship.

Emerald's plan to make Bradley jealous worked -- she just had no idea that in the meantime, she'd actually fall for Travis. Who's actually a Class-A jerk.

C'est la vie. :)

PiB August 18, 2010 at 1:52 AM  

Brad, I'm glad you have finally worked through your feelings. And had a chat to Jade.

Emerald may be falling for Travis, but he's really just not serious about her. That line about he could cuddle, kiss and be near her because she was a lot like Jade shows his real preference. :) But she didn't get to read that so she doesn't know...yet.

Teenage hormones still on the rampage. :)

Kaleeko August 18, 2010 at 2:50 AM  

Brad never realized how serious she was about finding someone else... If she'd settle for *Travis* of all people. He loves her so, he just didn't want to spoil their one chance to make it perfect. That, and various other convaluted reasons only a teenage boy could come up with.

I can't help but feel bad for Emerald. If only she knew...

PiB August 18, 2010 at 2:53 AM  

I think that is Brad's problem in a nutshell. He wanted to wait for the perfect moment to do the perfect thing for his perfect girl. Life is never perfect and he has to learn to cope.

Come on, you is gonna let Emerald know, isn't you? ... :)

Kaleeko August 18, 2010 at 3:19 AM  

Yup, exactly. :) Brad's a romantic, old-fashioned idealist. Emerald's a free spirit, though, and does not think like that at all! Unfortunate misunderstanding, there.

Oh, Emerald will find out in due time! It just would've been a lot better if she could've figured it out herself. ;)

Chrysame August 18, 2010 at 4:33 AM  

Brad has handled it pretty well so far considering the depth of his feelings for Emerald. Better he take it out on his inventions then on another sim.

I feel sympathy for all the teens involved. None of them have what they want. Why do I have the feeling it's going to get more complicated? :)

Kaleeko August 18, 2010 at 4:39 AM  

You have that feeling because you're right, as usual, mah dear. ;)

Brad's pretty tough. I have a hard time reconciling his 'Friendly' trait with the fact that he has 100x more things to be angry about than everyone else in the story, so he tends to just have outbursts when the exterior friendliness becomes too much to contain.

I'm considering changing that trait in the future, though, considering what he goes through as a teen. We'll see. :) I do know, though, that I'm gonna open up a poll to select his last trait when the time comes, because I have about 3 I can't pick between for the life of me.

Chrysame August 18, 2010 at 4:51 AM  

*nod* That makes complete sense. This is a pretty traumatic experience for him and I, imagine, it's going to get worse before it gets better. It definitely could change his outlook and thus his friendly trait.

Heck, if what I suspect might happen actually happens...then all the teens are going to be affected for the rest of their sim days.

Kaleeko August 18, 2010 at 5:32 AM  

Hmmmm. :) You're going to have to keep a note of your predictions and let me know how well they match up once this storyline is over. You've done pretty well predicting things so far! I'm pretty bad about dropping too many hints... but you may also just be ninja'ing my braincells! ;)

PiB August 18, 2010 at 5:35 AM  

I think Chrysame is *excellent* at ninja'ing braincells. Some of her guesses in Sammy stories were very close to the mark. :)

Chrysame August 18, 2010 at 5:37 AM  

I am Momma Ninja! *puts on her black ninja mask and starts a load of laundry*

Kaleeko August 18, 2010 at 5:48 AM  

Hahahaha! Momma Ninja, heee. Mmm, I do get the feeling some of my braincells are MIA... At least you guys won't have to wait too much longer to find out. I am taking things a wee bit slower because I'd like to make sure Jennifer is caught up before then, but it should all be done by Friday next week at the latest.

Woo! :D

Dee August 18, 2010 at 4:28 PM  

Oh Emerald you are making such a big mistake. You are going to end up being as hurt as Bradley and I have a feeling your hurt is never going to go away. I can't help but think you are about to do something really dumb and it's going to be with you for the rest of your life.

Kaleeko August 18, 2010 at 7:42 PM  

Emerald is so confused. :( She should've just walked away from Travis from the very beginning, but... He has a mind trance ability or something. Must be the red hair.

I'm a bit amused, that the DS thread on the forums is only on page 2, but has almost a thousand views. Well, people are clicking my story! That's a start! It's pry a lost cause though, it looks like a few people are reading it, but people post there so much that ironically few things get much attention.

Time for some Captain Morgan!

Dee August 18, 2010 at 7:56 PM  

Time for some sleep for me.

Travis is a jock. Those girls love those jocks or at least they think they do. I think he's cute myself. The red hair doesn't hurt a bit.

The forum moves so fast and half the time people only get involved with the controversial threads. You've been lucky there to get that many views.

Most of the time I just click for recent post instead of anything specific. Probably amistake on my part.

Kaleeko August 18, 2010 at 8:10 PM  

Sleep well, Dee. :)

I think Travis is a cutie, he's basically a carbon copy of Meredith it seems like... But he lacks depth.

I'm guilty of only looking at recent threads, too. It's hard to muck through all of them to find the good stuff, which is a shame, because most of the threads that get continually bumped by their owners are... not what I'm looking for, to put it nicely.

Jennifer August 21, 2010 at 11:58 PM  

Such a shame that Brad had to see Emerald with someone else - in this instance, his brother! - to realize he was ready to have a relationship with her.

As you said though, 'suck is life of a teenager'. ;)

I think Emerald and Travis are cute together but then maybe it's because she looks so much like Jade. lol

Loving these chapters about the young lovin' teens. Such cute, sweet love. Hee hee. ;)

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