Tuesday, October 18, 2011
"Veronica and Kenzie are going to be here any moment, dear--are you sure you don't want any help getting your costume on?"
A few muffled grumbles came from the other side of the door before she finally got her response. "Nooo, I got it..."
Alesha took a deep breath as she waited as patiently as she could for her daughter. Recently, Margo had become much more independent--unfortunately, it was not quite the blessing Alesha had hoped it would be. She was obviously trying to compensate for her inability to read, but it was beginning to cause issues. The most every-day tasks were suddenly becoming a lot more difficult than usual, because Margo still had trouble doing even the most simple things--but now she was refusing help with any of them.
Still, it was probably a good thing. Margo would never learn to conquer these problems if she didn't do it on her own--but such as in this case, she was trying to tackle things most kids her age couldn't do. It was nearly impossible to button up a costume with giant fairy wings as an adult, much less a child with short little arms.
Finally, though, after nearly a half an hour, Margo emerged from her bedroom looking incredibly triumphant. Alesha was even opening her mouth to congratulate her... when she noticed a problem.
"Sweetie... don't you want to change your shoes?"
Margo looked down, confused. "No... why?"
"Well... they don't really fit with your costume, do they? Fairies don't wear rubber boots."
She blinked slowly, obviously still puzzled. "Why not?"
Alesha was fighting an uphill battle, but it was a totally pointless one. "You know what," she said with a smile, kneeling down and placing her hand on Margo's shoulder. "I have no idea. I think it's about time I see a rubber-boot clad fairy on Halloween!"
The look of pride on her daughter's face was worth every word--but before either of them could say anything else, a gentle ring came at the door.
"That must be your friends!" Alesha exclaimed, nudging Margo towards the door. "Go on, answer it!"
"TRICK OR TREAAAAAT!"
Margo let out a small gasp of surprise before bursting into giggles. "You guys are silly! I love your costumes..."
"Aw, thanks!" Kenzie exclaimed proudly, her chest puffing up a little. "My mom helped me put it together! I've always wanted to play a princess."
Veronica looked a bit bashful, but was equally as excited. "We got mine on one of our trips to Barnacle Bay." Ronnie looked down and gave a bit of a confused stare at Margo's boots; but remembering that she'd never seen Margo without them, she exclaimed, "You look real pretty!"
The girls trotted inside all aflutter over each others costumes, closely followed by a tall, smiling man that approached Alesha with a friendly hand extended. "Mrs. Kane! A pleasure to finally meet you. Phillip Grant--Veronica's father."
"Oooh, yes yes!" Alesha responded with a smile, reciprocating the handshake enthusiastically. "I must say, my mother in law speaks highly of you. I... er, nice costume."
"Thanks--my wife sure seems to enjoy it," he said jokingly with a broad smile. "Sorry I can't stick around and chat, I'm taking Veronica's sister and her friends trick-or-treating up around our street--I just figured I'd pick up Kenzie on the way to drop Veronica off since I was already halfway here."
"You behave for Mrs. Kane, alright?" he called out who his daughter, who responded with a quiet giggle and a 'Yes, daddy' before he gave Alesha a polite nod, and closed the door on his way out.
"I toldja we were gonna fill our bags super fast on this street!" Kenzie said matter-of-factly as the girls stood quietly on the sidewalk, idly watching the other kids from school milling between each house. "My mom brought me here last year, there's lots of grammas and grandpas who like to spoil kids rotten."
Veronica's expression turned a little smug. "I counted 56 pieces in my bag before Mrs. Kane took it back to the car. My sister's gonna be sooo jealous."
Kenzie smirked. "I'm already jealous. I can't believe you counted them that fast!"
Looking a little embarrassed, Ronnie shrugged and said, "I'm just good with that sorta thing, I guess."
Margo looked longingly at Veronica, but didn't say anything. She knew it wasn't fair to be envious, but she couldn't help it; Ronnie was smart. Really smart. She picked up on everything incredibly fast--there were even rumors the only reason she was still in the same class was so she could stay with her sister. It wouldn't have been that bad, but Kenzie was pretty smart, too. Not quite in the same way, but she had a particular knack for figuring things out quickly even if she wasn't as 'book smart' as Ronnie was. It gave them something in common that Margo didn't share, which made things a little awkward. They both absorbed knowledge like sponges absorb water; Margo was about as absorbent as a limp noodle.
She wasn't going to let this spoil her night, though. 364 days a year she felt silly for dressing up and playing pretend, but Halloween? It was like a holiday made specifically for her. ... Minus the ghost, ghouls, and haunted houses. And the pumpkins. And the... okay, so it was a stretch--but she still wasn't going to let their smartness get her down.
"We could probably keep going," she mumbled softly, as probably the bravest thing she'd said all week. "My mum'll catch up to us with the extra bags soon, I bet."
"That's a great idea!" Kenzie said brightly. "I'm startin' to get bored waiting."
Margo immediately regretted her suggestion. Kenzie and Veronica looked positively thrilled to be going at this adventure without supervision, but Margo was beginning to miss her mother more and more each step they took.
"Guuuyyss," she said, her voice shakey. "Maybe we should stop... It's taking her an awful long time to find us."
"We're fiinne!" Kenzie remarked bravely. "My house is one block over, and I'm sure she'd call you if she was worried!" Beside her, Veronica agreed with a small nod.
However, it wasn't long before Kenzie and Veronica's opinion began to change. The street sign didn't read what Kenzie thought it would, and it was apparent pretty fast that they were lost. The conclusion left Kenz and Ronnie looking rather frightened, and Margo almost to the point of tears.
"Maybe we should go back," Veronica said abruptly after jumping quite high at something she thought she saw lurking in the shadows.
Kenzie, however, was determined. "No, no, I'm pretty sure my house is just around the corner! Stop worry-ing!"
"Guuyyss... I'm scaaaarreeed..."
The first thing Margo thought next was that her vision was incredibly blurry. There was also a strange tapping sensation on her shoulder. Thud. Thud. Thud... Someone's foot was poking her.
"W-what happened?' she stuttered, coming to quite rapidly.
"Y'all became a bunch of frickin' chickens, is what happened," came a voice that Margo immediately recognized as Ian's. "Pudge and Know-It-All ran off the second they saw me--and you... You fainted," Ian said with a devilish laugh.
All of Margo's fear was suddenly replaced with total embarrassment. "Don't call my friends names," she mumbled as she got to her feet, doing her best to avoid eye contact.
"Whatcha gonna do, cry me to death?" Ian said with a roll of his eyes, but when he realized that she actually was beginning to cry, his shoulders slumped at his sides. "Aw man, come oonn, don't be such a baby..."
Margo tried very hard to take his ill-mannered advice, but it was no use; her eyes were well beyond the welling-up phase.
Just as she thought things couldn't get worse, though, a sudden shuffle of branches and leaves sounded from a nearby bush; only moments later, a girl from their class erupted from it.
"Ian, I put the eggs by the back porch, it looks like the Turner's went to sleep for the--hey, what's she doing here?!"
"Her and her friends were walking past--the other two ran off when I spooked 'em, though."
"And you didn't wait for me? Bugger, I've always wanted to give the Geek Squad a good scare."
"Hey," Ian snapped, his face scrunching up in anger. "Don't call 'em that, alright? She's standing right there, ya know."
"So? Hasn't stopped you before."
"Well... I don't care, Wren. Just don't. She didn't do anything to you."
"Whoa, what's gotten into you? She your girlfriend now or somethin'?"
"Just shut up!" At Ian's raised voice, Wren finally backed down--though she sent a solid, dirty look in Margo's direction. "I'll meet you at the Turner's in ten minutes, alright?"
"Fine... Just so long as she's not with you."
"She won't be. Now buzz off."
As Wren disappeared from whence she came, Ian turned to Margo to say something--but he stopped when he caught her sniffling into her hands.
"Margo... Pleeaaase, could you please not cry?"
"W-why?" Margo sniffled, slowly beginning to walk away. "I thought you liked it."
"Well... It's kinda funny, yeah, but--" She sniffled, causing him to groan. "--Aw come ooonnn. Seriously?! Margo..."
"Juz go 'way."
Ian reached out his hand and carefully grabbed her by the arm, which she recoiled from--but it did cause her to stop. "Hold up a sec... I swear, I didn't mean to upset you. I was just tryin' to give you guys a bit of a scare, alright?"
She looked at him, puzzled. "Why?"
"'Cause... It's Halloween? And it's fun?" Margo looked unconvinced, so he sighed and continued. "I... guess I don't know. It's just what I do."
Margo wasn't sure why, but Ian continued to follow her as she walked down the sidewalk towards where she assumed Veronica and Kenzie ran; she occasionally worked up the nerve to ask him why he was still with her, but the second she opened her mouth all her courage evaporated.
"Ya know... I really am sorry, Margo," he finally said, out of no where.
"Sheesh, is that the only thing you know how to say?"
He immediately regretted his choice of words. "What I mean is--frick, why do you make this so difficult?! I just am, okay? I just wanted to tell you, I'm not gonna be mean to you anymore. Or... I'm gonna try."
She didn't even have to open her mouth all the way for Ian to know what her next question would be. "It doesn't matter, alright? I'm just bored with it. That's all."
As they turned the corner, Margo spotted her mother--closely followed by a princess and a pirate--but Ian was still by her side, so she stopped and gave him a long, rather confused look.
"Marrgoooo, come here honey!" Alesha called from the distance, but Margo didn't turn and move away immediately.
Instead, she gave a long, puzzled look into Ian's eyes, and uttered: "You're really not gonna be mean to me anymore?"
Ian paused. In a way, his words had been a crutch, to try and get her to stop crying--but at the back of his mind, his conversations with Alesha continued to float... along with the wrenching pain in his gut he had felt when Wren had called Margo a geek. So--bravely--he took Margo by the arms and nodded. "I can't promise, but... I'll try."
There was an awkward silence, after that; boy looking at girl, girl looking at boy, and a menagerie of emotions and confusion on both sides that made them both want to run away screaming as much as they both kind of wanted to smack each other. But, to Ian's surprise, Margo didn't. She stayed.
"Ya know... your make-up is really creepy," she finally said with a small cringe, eyeing the length of his costume.
"Thanks," he said, obviously quite proud of this fact. "I guess... your hair isn't as poofy as it usually is. It looks... pretty?"
"Well... I better go. See ya round, I guess." Margo said with a brief smile, before, with a shy shrug, she turned from his side and began running down the sidewalk towards her mom.
It wasn't much of a step, but in the end... it was probably the biggest one he had ever taken. Why she trusted him, he would never understand--but at least, for now, a solid weight had been lifted from his conscience. Margo really was more forgiving than he had ever imagined.
"Yeah," he said slowly, a weak smile spreading across his own cheeks. "See you 'round."
Just a short little Halloween themed post to give y'all something while I focus on Dipped for a little while, as well as get my game all set up with Pets!
This post is sort of a "special" because I literally had no plans to do this until Amelia suggested it to me the other day, so I put it together over the last couple of days even though it diverts from the storyline slightly. I hope you all have a WONDERFUL set of holidays! Happy Simming! <3