Love Through Betrayal

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

"Every choice he made that I withstood, every secret of his I kept in the dark, every sin I forgave, was because I thought he loved me... Because I thought it was what forever was all about."

Meredith fixed the rearview mirror of her car, still shaking in anger and pain. She had no idea where to go, but she knew she had to get out... away. Thank the plumbbob that Travis was spending the night at a friend's house -- she couldn't bear the thought of his questions. Bradley would be fine with Jeb until the morning... Let him play the parent for a while. Always her, changing diapers. Always her, reading them books and helping them with homework. Where was he all that time... Off screwing his coworkers while looting the town?

She wiped a tear from her cheek, and pulled out of the driveway. No idea where to go, but if she started to drive, maybe she'd find out where she was going on the way.

After plugging the gas pedal as far down as it would go, Meredith found herself all the way across town... Farah's house. She remembered ending up here once before, when she discovered Jebidiah's dark secret -- see how his mother handled it now when she found out he was cheating scum, too.

But when she rang the doorbell, no one answered. She rung it again... And again. By that point, it was obvious no one was home, but Meredith could do nothing but bang on the door, hoping for a miracle.

... Nothing. Eventually, furious and tired, she wiped her cheeks once more and laid down on the bench outside her door, falling asleep.

When Farah drove up, she immediately noticed something was awry. Why was Meredith's car in her driveway? Why was the security lighting around her house lit up?

Climbing the steps to her front door, she found Meredith there, asleep. She didn't bother having to wake her daughter-in-law, though -- the moment she ascended the last step, Meredith was awakened from her stupor, and looked up into Farah's half-egyptian eyes. "I need somewhere to stay, tonight."

Farah unlocked the door and ushered Meredith inside, scowling as she looked the young woman over. "What's happened?"

"He's been cheating on me, Farah. He's a bloody rotten liar... All this time, I thought he loved me, but apparently he's been off, fooling around with other men's wives... Even in my own home..." Meredith fought back the sniffles as Farah reached out her hand to try and comfort the redhead.

"Oh, sweetheart," she delicately said. "Are you sure there hasn't been a mista--"

"Of course there hasn't been a mistake!" Meredith yelled, balling her hands into fists. "His own boss told me, having seen it himself! What reason would he have to lie to me?"

"Meredith, calm down!" Farah's eyes had grown wide. "I can think of several reasons that his boss would have to lie to you, but that's not why I ask... I know my son can be a malicious man, but if there is anything in this world that has caused even a shred of hope that there's been a change in his life, it's you. Why he would do this... It's beyond me." She sighed deeply, rubbing her own face in confusion.

After a moment, Farah pointed down the steps. "Your old room is made up as a guest bedroom, you're more than welcome to stay the night. Sleep on it... We'll talk again in the morning."

There was something oddly reminiscent about pulling back the covers of the place she and Jebidiah used to sleep -- as if it had only been yesterday when they spent their first night together... Only yesterday when he got down on one knee... "Oh why, Jebidiah... Why?"

Meredith wasn't the only one having a hard time sleeping that night. "You've screwed up big time, this time," Jebidiah said aloud to himself as he looked around his empty living room, rubbing the back of his sore neck to try and alleviate some of the tension he'd self-served. Of course, his betrayal wasn't the only thing keeping his mind occupied. His boss's flinchless knife in his back... Cody's disgusted reaction... Mimi's lack thereof... Not to mention that it would not be much longer before he would have to trust his safety to the very people that now were likely lighting flaming dungheaps on his front lawn.

There's no rest for the wicked... And certainly not a wicked father.

But there was something comforting about the way that Bradley reached for his hand as he came to soothe his cries. "You're still too young to hate me," he sighed, touching his son's cheek. "Give it time. I'll find a way to screw up our relationship in the end."

You have to try not to, though, Jebidiah... You have to at least try.

When morning came, Meredith sought out Farah's computer and started duking it out on some computer games. Nothing to ease the tension like pummeling a quarterback in pixellated pixel-vision.

Farah wasn't going to let her daughter-in-law get off so easy, though. After she'd had herself a cup of coffee, she followed Meredith into her study and they began to talk.

"I just don't know, Farah," Meredith sighed. "My head's still spinning. How could he do this to me? To our kids? I just don't understand... None of it makes any sense. How can I possibly trust him anymore, as a husband? First he lies to me about his job, and now he's lying to me about our marriage -- why should I even bother staying with him anymore?"

"Listen, Meredith--" Farah pointed her finger towards the younger woman. "You aren't going to be able to figure any of this out if you keep childishly running away from these issues. You have to confront them head on, or you'll never know why... All you're doing is making this worse by avoiding them. Stop acting like you just stepped out of high-school and go talk to your husband.'

"I know he loves you, even if this was a poor way to show it. There must be a good reason for it... And while I'm not saying it's your fault, who knows his reasons? You aren't going to figure that out until you get dressed, and go resolve this like a grown woman. You're always talking about how you want to be a stronger person... Now's your time to prove you can be."

Meredith wanted to blow up at Farah for that advice -- how could she say that! -- but deep down, she knew that at least part of what she said was right. The longer she let this brew, the worse it would get... But still, there was one more place she needed to go before finally facing up to her husband.

"...And that's when I went to Farah's for the night. I just couldn't stand to see him anymore." By now, Meredith had fought back most of the tears, and was mostly just confused and frustrated. "I know I need to go see him, but I have no idea what to say. I wish... I wish I just didn't even know. I don't--"

"Don't say that, Meredith, that's absolutely ridiculous." Tana was infuriated -- much more than she was ever let on to sister. "You'd rather he was cheating on you but you just didn't know about it? I can't believe that -- that's so incredibly naive!" Tana threw up her arms in disgust. "I knew from the moment I laid eyes on him, he was absolutely no good -- but you never, ever listen to me, do you, Meredith?!"

But Meredith refused to respond. Her anger intensifying, she turned away... Tana did the same, stomping off to go have a dip in her pool. Meh -- all she said was an 'I told you so'... And it was a well deserved one! "Jebidiah better hope he doesn't run into me anytime soon, though," Tana grumbled to herself as she walked away.

Meredith approached the window, wearily looking across the street at her house -- but apparently, Jeb had seen her car pull up, and was running across the street. "No... No, not now..." Her breathing began to quicken, and...

Before she could stop it, the tears began to flow again. And she thought she was doing so well... But all it took was the sight of her husband to bring his treachery all back to the forefront of her mind. She was still sobbing when he walked into Tana's house, his eyes still full of the same shock from the night before.

Meredith couldn't move, even if she wanted to. Her legs were still so weak, and no matter where she went, she knew her husband would catch her.  "Meredith," he said in the most mournful tone he was capable of. "Meredith, please, let me explain."

She shook her head, but he didn't listen. "Meredith, I know you probably won't believe me, but... That woman... I only did what I did because I thought I had to. I know it doesn't make any sense, and there are some things I just can't explain right now, but I need you to know that everything I did, I did to protect our family. I know... I know it's hard to believe... But I never felt so horrible in my life, when I had to do that... Not even you finding out was worse than that.'

"I've never loved anyone but you, Meredith." For a brief moment, she reached her hand out to touch his arm... But she instantly pulled it away. He was right to think she'd be confused -- if she was before, now she was even moreso.

"Please, I know you don't want to trust me right now," he continued, putting his hands together and pleading. "But it will all makes sense in time. I want to tell you, so badly, but I can't, right now... I will soon. Once this is all over... In a couple of days... Everything will make sense. All I ask is that you wait."

"Oh Jebidiah..." She thought silently to herself as she pulled him into a hug. "I hate you, for not letting me love you less."

The rest of the day was tense, but they managed. Travis kept dinner from being silent -- he had so much to talk about from his latest baseball game and team sleepover.

After they'd eaten, Travis and Jebidiah settled into the living room to play video games. Still, Jeb could not catch his wife's eye... Nothing had ever felt worse.

Not even the anxiety that finally overtook him that night. "It's tomorrow night," he mumbled to himself while going over the details of the plan once again on his laptop. "Then it will all be over. I can take our share of the money, and go far, far away from here... I can tell Meredith everything, without worrying what the Company might do to her... I can keep my family safe, and do things how I want them done." He finished up his work, shut the lid of his laptop, and went up to bed.

"Guess I'm as ready as I'll ever be."

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Anonymous,  June 22, 2010 at 9:55 PM  

Why do I get the feeling things are going to go from bad to worse? I'm ready for the plan to get rolling, too, Jeb!

Maybe you'll find out once and for all who was the leak. Why did they stop? Can Dallas be thrown over. Push the old man out. Time for new, younger blood!!

I'm going to subscribe by email. I want to see these updates as soon as you post them. Yes, I'm greedy.

Anonymous,  June 22, 2010 at 10:13 PM  

Kaleeko, would you mind adding my email address to your email and mobile feed? It's in my profile. Then, your posts will come straight away. Thank you!

Unknown June 22, 2010 at 11:45 PM  

*whistle* ... ;)

Just gonna have to wait and see! I've got a good portion of the next few posts written out, but I'm trying to space them out so that people who are still trying to catch up aren't overwhelmed with constant updates. (I have way too much time on my hands these days.)

I definitely could add you to my feed! ... If I knew how. Gonna go see if I can figure it out on my own, but if you don't mind explaining how, I'd super appreciate it. I'm still getting used to this whole blogly business. :)

Unknown June 22, 2010 at 11:55 PM  

Aha! Nevermind. I think I figured it out. Email Notifications Box under the Email & Mobile tab? Put your email in there, hopefully it works right!

I'm itching to throw up another post, but I think I'll wait until tomorrow evening. I probably wouldn't be so anxious to crank out posts if I didn't have over 1100 screenshots worth of playtime that needs to be documented... ;D

Anonymous,  June 23, 2010 at 12:00 AM  

That's it. Plop my email right in there and I should get them directly to my virtual mailbox. YeeHaw!

I'll be patient. As much as I can. I'll try.

So, do you take art commissions through DA? *whistles*

Unknown June 23, 2010 at 12:19 AM  

Awesomesauce. :D

As for commissions.. in a way, yes. 90% of my gallery is art of others' characters they've asked me to do -- I personally refer to them as requests, though, since I don't take money for my drawings. However, I haven't taken any requests in some time, and now I'm like waaay out of practice.

I've sort of hijacked my art computer back into working order though, so I may be able to do a drawing or two when the mood strikes me. ;) Can't speak to the quality they may be, though!

Anonymous,  June 23, 2010 at 12:36 AM  

I had an idea for a couple of City of Heroes characters. One is mine and one is a buddy. I liked your stuffed dragon picture so much I wondered what these characters would look like as stuffed superhero dolls. Just a wandering thought.

PiB - Nicarra June 23, 2010 at 4:42 AM  

Ok, ready for the next update.

Give Jeb credit, he does seem to love his wife. We'll have to see if he can keep it together for the family and keep them all safe.

Di Al Martini June 23, 2010 at 5:10 AM  

One thing about mafia is often they want to keep their family safe. Sometimes they look like a good father or a good man, and keep their dirty job hidden from their family. But, I think that how much Jeb wanted to keep his family save, he actually put them in trouble by keep on doing his "underground" activity. I can see now why their marriage survived, neither one of them want to lose the "security" in each other arms. Jeb maybe doing dirty job outside, but somehow deep inside he is a good sim, at least Meredith keeps the good side of him.

Dee June 23, 2010 at 5:55 AM  

Ok, so it looks like maybe Jeb only kissed that other one to help him in his plan. I could be wrong though. I often am.

Please add me to the email notification list too. I go through my emails in the order i receive them and sometimes forget to look at my blog list.

I wish everyone I have followed would add me to their list. it's so much easier to keep up that way.

I am so curious to see what is going to happen.

Unknown June 23, 2010 at 10:55 AM  

@ Chrysame: Sent you an email. :)

@ Dee: Added! :)

While I personally would write that Jeb kissed Tameka only to shut her up, with how often he tries to kiss everyone... I can't deny that he probably enjoys it a little bit. :P

Jebidiah is a pretty complicated cookie, at this point. Initially, I planned for him to be blacker than sin, but with how much he's always loved on his kids and wife, it was hard to really say that. Meredith certainly 'one-ups' him when it comes to how much she loves him, but by the end of this part of the storyline, they'll be on more even keel. Jeb finally will realize what he's got.

I may've mentioned this before, but their relationship dipped into the red at one point, and they still only had romantic wishes towards each other. Who knows, maybe all their trials have made them stronger... I hope so. :)

I've been tempted to have Jeb go through a mid-life-crisis and rearrange his traits, but I don't believe he'd ever change entirely.

Unknown June 23, 2010 at 10:58 AM  

Also was gonna mention, getting email notifications about posts would be pretty cool, but I actually have a pretty decent setup atm. The browser I use, Flock, has a 'Feed' sidebar that tells me how many new posts there are on all the blogs I follow. It's pretty handy! :D

Anonymous,  June 23, 2010 at 11:59 AM  

Oh fine, brag about your Flock! Hmmph! ;)

I would hope Jeb enjoyed kissing the pretty girls. Otherwise, it would be quite the chore.

If they've still got the hots for each other then it must be the real deal. If only Jeb would slap people instead of kissing them.

Dee June 23, 2010 at 4:28 PM  

Thanks kaleek9. I subscribed to one of the blog once via blog feed. Problem is it shows up at the top of my screen and I forget to look at it. :)

Yeah, I'm with Chrysame. We like seeing them get slapped around. :D

Anonymous,  June 23, 2010 at 4:30 PM  

"We like seeing them get slapped around." o.O

Unknown June 23, 2010 at 6:43 PM  

Definitely would be nice if he threw out some 'your mommas a llama' or something every now and then... He actually throws insults at his mom quite a bit, but.. it'd be a bit hard to kiss her. ;D

Can't say I don't enjoy a good fight, either. That's probably pretty evident though, considering how much torture I put my poor Sims through...

Jen July 28, 2010 at 10:50 PM  

Gosh, I don't think things are going to go to plan with this big job. Something bad has got to happen. Not that I want something to happen, I don't, but knowing Jeb's luck something will.

Very sweet of him to declare his love to her. He must really love her and their family but I feel sad for Meredith.
I hate to see my simmies in distress or unhappy. lol
She loves him too so maybe she will stay with him.

A wonderful chapter! The story is getting really gritty now. lol

Oh and thank you, Kaleeko, for following my blog. ;) I'm still new to blogging. I have one story atm but not sure what I'm doing as I don't have a lot of time on my hands....except to read other people's stories. lol

Unknown July 28, 2010 at 11:07 PM  

They really do love each other very much. Their relationship bounces aaaalll over the place, but some things never change, and one of them is Jeb + Mere. :D

Well, I'll be there to read it when you are able to update. :) Managing a story can be work, but in the end, it's all about doing what you enjoy... Whether it's reading, writing, or both. :D

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