Burying the Past

Saturday, July 17, 2010

It was a rash decision that Meredith was making, but with the recent turn of events and the tower of her sanity slowly toppling over, she felt she had little choice but to do something before she cracked -- her goal, get rid of Chandra... And how, she finally realized, had been right in front of her nose all along.

From the box under the guest-bed she'd thrown it into, Meredith brought her sister's "gift" out into the dining room and set it upon the table. She looked at it, hard, and long... but after several moments, she began to cry.

"The knife..." She thought to herself, burying her face into her sweaty palms. "The knife that killed Chandra. She must be bound to it, but... Does that mean that Tana didn't..."

After a moment of thought, a horrific realization came into her mind: that's why Tana saved it. She could easily have used her savvy crime scene skills to remove all trace of Chandra's murder from it's blade, and get rid of it at a moment's notice, but in the off-chance the murderer left their prints on the hilt, it would be the only way to prove Meredith's innocence... But, at the same time, if it was Meredith's prints on the weapon, and no one else...

"That's why she doesn't want me to touch it. But..." She shook her head. "I don't need it. They'll never find us, here... I'd much rather just get rid of Chandra. And even if they find us, what if... What if I really did... And they found this..." She continued to cry, but, fear suddenly pushed her forward: it was time to get rid of this thing, once and for all.

It had been difficult shoving her son's mining device into the back of their car, but Meredith somehow managed without straining herself too much. Across town, she drove, going as far out of the way as she possibly could without going so far that it'd take hours to get back. There, she dragged the miner from the car, set it up on a hill overlooking a pond, and somehow managed to figure out the controls.

"Drill deep, Meredith," she told herself, not stopping to think how crazy she must sound. "Drill as deep as you can, so they can never find it... Never... Ever..."

But the hole was too deep. She moved to it's edge to formally drop the can down into oblivion, but she stepped too close, and the dirt cascaded beneath her feet, bringing her into it's gaping mouth.

"Aaagh!" There was a slight echo of her voice, proceeded by the resounding *clunk* of the can that she'd dropped to get her grip so she didn't fall.

She struggled for what seemed like ages, gnawing at the dirt with her fingers, but constantly being denied safe ground as it caved in under her weight. The hole was not wide, so she managed to spread her feet and scurry up the sides, but by the time she'd reached the surface once again, her clothes were torn and dirtied from dirt and things sticking out the sides of the hole-wall, and her hair was... unrecognizable, to say the least.

Taking only a few moments for a breather, Meredith quickly began to fill the hole that the miner had drilled. Adreniline from her fall still coursed through her veins, allowing her a rather surprising speed to fill a tunnel that seemed to reach for the center of the Earth. Shovel it up, shovel it in... Shovel it up, shovel it in... She repeated the movement so many times that she became frightened the rhythm would send her to sleep, and she'd end up falling right back down the hole again.

But, as the last few inches of emptiness suddenly began to turn into a rising mass of brown, Meredith gave a huge sigh of relief. "Well... Goodbye, Chandra," she huffed between the last scoops of dirt. "You are, and always were, a pain in my butt. Good riddance to you!"

Once the dirt was patted down, with the turf of grass back over the top to seal and conceal it, she found a flat, large rock to lay over it: a marker... Just in case. Fear still gripped her, making her quiver anxiously, but an enormous weight had been lifted off of her -- no more Chandra, no more problems... Right? Right.

Meredith had completely lost track of time. By the time she pulled up to the house and rushed through the door, Travis was already home from school, and was sitting at the table doing his homework. "Plumbbob!" She cursed, closing the door a bit first as she gathered up the last ounce of energy she could to try and remain quiet, to sneak by her son unnoticed.

She tip-toed through the door -- not even shutting it to avoid the noise -- and slowly crept up the steps. When she reached the landing, she breathed deeply and smiled... "Home free," she muttered to herself.

"And what is that supposed to mean?!" Meredith whirled around... only to be treated to the sight of her angry son. "What have you been doing, mom?! Where have you been! Everyone's going to be here for Amelia's birthday in less than an hour, and you're... You're..."

"I-I-... I haven't been doing anything, Travis. It's... it's none of your business. Just don't worry about it okay?"

"Mom, please... Don't lie to me. You've always been a terrible liar, it's not worth it." She suddenly looked offended, but Travis spread his hands wide, now pleading for answer. "You've been acting so weird lately, mom... Does it have to do with why we moved here? Why you're always so angry with Dad? Please, mom... Tell me what's going on."

To his surprise, she almost immediately broke down into tears.

"Oh, mother..." He grabbed her by the arms, bending down to meet the gaze of her hanging head. "I'm sorry, I'm just... I'm just so worried."

"Travis, I really w-wish I could tell you, but y-you're just going to have to trust me. It's j-just important to know, now, that's it's over... It's all over. We c-can go back to the way things were."

Travis wasn't convinced, but considering how little time she had to get ready for their imminently arriving guests, he let her go so she could get cleaned up. There, in the bathtub, she continued to let out the rest of her tears, hoping that by the time the rest of the family arrived, she'd be empty of her emotions and no one would be able to notice...

Luckily, Farah was such a spotlight-hog (a rather boring, irritating spotlight-hog at that) that no one -- save Travis -- noticed the puffy rings around Meredith's eyes.

Well... Except Tana. "Is your mom alright?" she asked Travis, who seemed a bit more distant to her than usual.

"Yeah, she's fine... Just tired from working out earlier, I bet," was the response he gave, aimed more into his glass of water than at his aunt, whose gaze he seemed to be avoiding.

"Naturally, the grandmother should do the honors," Farah said with her typical snooty smile, scooping up Amelia from the crib as Meredith lit the candles on the cake. No one seemed to complain, much less Meredith; it freed her up to take pictures, and meant that everyone's eyes were still avoiding hers.

Everyone cheered and hollared as Farah blew out the one candle that signified Amelia's age...

... and less-than-humbly stepped out of the way so that aging could take it's course: the Kane's last child had finally become a toddler.

The party probably could have gone a little better, though. Farah saw the need to argue with Jebidiah -- over nothing, it seemed -- at every opportunity that presented itself...

... and Jebidiah, severely irritated, tried to cheer himself up with some immature pranks on his sister-in-law.

Meredith wasn't the only one that was feeling under the weather, though. After cleaning up the messy stacks of cake dishes and drink glasses, Mere escaped to the living room to discover Bradley hiding  out by the fire, his nose pressed into a book. "Oh dear," she sighed softly to herself. For a moment, she simply stood there, trying to decide what exactly to say to him. He looked as depressed as she felt, and that couldn't mean anything good.

"Hey sweetie... Good book?" Meredith set herself down beside Brad, looking over his shoulder at the page he was reading.

"Yeah..." His voice was rather grumpy, especially compared to his usual friendly manner.

"You know, I bet it must be hard for you, being the middle kid and all... Everyone always doting on your sister, and your brother getting all the attention... But remember, someday, you're going to be just as big and cool as he is, and your sister especially is going to  be looking up to you. Travis is going to be all old and moved out once she's your age, so, you know... She's going to need a brother that's always gonna be there for her all the time. Do you think you could do that for me? Watch out for Amelia?"

"Yeah... I s'pose."

"Well then, now's a good time to start! Why don't you put the book away, and go play with her... You'll get to be the first person ever to teach her anything!"

Well, Bradley certainly did get over his middle-kid blues, and found himself adoring his sister more and more each day. Luckily for him, his jealousy had only been a temporary flash, and all it took was one act for him to go back to being his happy self.

... But, unfortunately for Meredith, her own desperate act had not had the same effect. She'd only put a stopper on a reminder -- a dream -- but there were other ways for the past to haunt her than ghosts.

A better picture of toddler Amelia:

Note: Family Tree updated, Archive added, and another list of Kaleeko-related links added on the bottom of the page.


Anonymous,  July 18, 2010 at 12:05 AM  

She has freckles. I'm done in. Sweet baby girl with your sunny smile, hopefully it will brighten up the entire house.

Meredith did what she had to do and now, she can relax. At least for a little bit. I'm not sure it was very smart of her to bury the metal can next to water.

I don't think this is the last will see of Chandra. I suspect everything!

PiB - Nicarra July 18, 2010 at 12:05 AM  

Another great chapter. There's always so much to comment on, I get overwhelmed and then never comment at all! bad me.

I'm sure that Meredith's problems aren't really so easy to bury, in any sense. I gotta have an inventor and get some of these cool gadgets though!

I particularly like the Bradley bit - middle child feeling left out but once he starts playing with the new toddler, he's dedicated to his little sister.

And Amelia is just adorable.

Di Al Martini July 18, 2010 at 12:13 AM  

That was surely a desperate act of Mere to hide the can. Good job with the pictures and narration too.

Poor Travis, he was getting worried. The conversation of her with Brad was lovely, though. Amelia is cute.

Unknown July 18, 2010 at 12:30 AM  

Thank you, guys. :D

Amelia turned out really adorable. She definitely has her mother's features, but her dad's skin and hair... Purple eyes? No idea where those came from. Guess it just makes her special. ;)

The inventor's toys are awesome, PiB. I actually like the improved widgets more than anything, they're so goofy! It's a worthwhile skill, but, dangerous...

I do feel a bit bad for Travis, because he's totally left in the dark on everything... yet, he still manages to be supportive the entire time. Bradley's still too young to have a clue that something's wrong.

Chandra may yet resurface, someday... We shall have to see! Even I don't know if she will, yet. I haven't *really* played much in several weeks, so I am very close to actually being caught up. Feels good. :)

Dee July 18, 2010 at 8:14 AM  

Amelia is so cute with her freckles.

I have a feeling the past is going to catch up to all of them.

Travis is very supportive, yet I have a feeling he is going to keep digging until he finds out what is going on.

I love what you've done with the house. Especially that bathroom.

Unknown July 18, 2010 at 8:41 AM  

Thank you, Dee. :) I hope the hard work on the house paid off. It's a little bit cramped sometimes, but I'm a fan of smaller houses anyways. It's definitely the nicest house I've built... But that's probably not saying much. I probably spent like 10 hours in Create-a-Style alone though. ^^

I think I went back and added freckles to Travis at the same time. I figured that, considering how much he looks like his mom, he should have them too. :)

Dee July 18, 2010 at 10:39 AM  

I like smaller houses too. I like being able to find everyone. The one I'm in now is even a little larger than I like but Reed needed a work room.

I too can spend all day in CAS and still find things I want to change.

Raisin Hale July 19, 2010 at 2:28 PM  

amelia is too cute!!! such pretty eyes... and those freckles!!

Unknown July 19, 2010 at 5:20 PM  

Thanks, Marty! I have to say, that new hairstyle for toddlers is amazing. It's hard to not be adorable with those pigtails... But, her little cherub cheeks and freckles sure do help. ;)

Jen August 12, 2010 at 11:33 PM  

Amelia is just gorgeous. Love the yellow outfit.
Actually I wanted to ask you how did you change the color of the blanket she was wrapped in when she was a bub?
The normal blue and pink can be a bit tiresome sometimes.

This was a great chapter, I love sim parties! ;)

Unknown August 13, 2010 at 1:26 AM  

You can change the baby's wrappings with Twallan's Master Controller mod. Just Go Advanced-Edit in CAS, go to the clothing tab, and you can double-click the wrappings to bring up Create-A-Style.

Some patterns look a bit funny with the layered wrappings, but its worth it to change that annoying blue-pink. Warning, though: don't try to change their age while in CAS as a baby. Good way to crash your game. :P

Jen August 13, 2010 at 2:37 AM  

I don't have Twallan's mod installed in my game. A little too scared of what it can do. lol

I don't really care much for the rest of the neighborhood but it would be nice if some of them did age every once in a while.
Not sure how my sims feel but every time I follow them down town I get tired of seeing the same faces. ;)

Unknown August 13, 2010 at 3:33 AM  

Twallan's Master Controller mod has nothing to do with aging or neighborhood progression -- thats the Story Progression mod. Master Controller is kinda a 'toolset' of different commands to use on Sims that allow you to simply click on a Sim to enter Plan Outfit mode, one-click instant household switches, edit Sims in CAS, edit relationship levels, etc etc. It's a great mod, and has absolutely no impact on the game whatsoever outside of the player using it to edit stuff.

Story Progression is quite different, and would make a huge impact to your neighborhood (usually positive!) if you tried it out, but it's not the one used to edit Sims and such. ;)

Twallan's probably made about 25 mods, those two are just the most popular and useful ones. :D

Jen August 13, 2010 at 8:09 AM  

Of course, you didn't say story progression did you. My Bad. lol I blame it being late at night. Haha.

It certainly sounds useful. I really miss the one-click instant household change.

Maybe I will have a look on the weekend. Thanks. :)
I'd better get some shut-eye now. ;)

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