Chapter 20: A Query and a Summons

The Underworld has six consecutive months of October, two months of November (for Harvest Festival purposes) and two Decembers (because even denizens of the down below enjoy gifts). The Grand Demon Council will vote on whether or not to add a July for pool party purposes and is collecting feedback as we speak. – The Book of the Dead, Revised Edition

ALICE

Alice kept her cool when she returned to the dressing room. The stockings—borrowed from Contessa—and the ball gown she cut up to make the skirt were discarded immediately in favor of a comfortable pair of jeans. As soon as she slipped them on, she felt like herself again. Only then did she take a moment to squeal with excitement.

It all worked! (Even the poem, which, she had a new appreciation for now that she actually understood what it was about. And to think, she had recited it during a high school Lockup & Llamas gaming session. Sheesh!) 

The producers gave her the thumbs up before she left the stage, she was on the show! Ben was right! It was the exact perfect amount!

And man did it feel good to rub it in Vlad’s face. The look he gave her: like he wanted to shove her up against a wall and eat her up…okay…well that look had actually been pretty good. But the other look, the one where he was shocked that she didn’t fall at his feet. That was awesome!

“Congratulations!” 

Alice whirled around. Jimena was smiling at her with fake enthusiasm. Jimena who thought she could rattle Alice by doing the same mean girl act Alice had been dealing with all her life. 

“No one can do Alice better than you,” Ben cackled.

Alice agreed.

“She would not be welcome in the underworld at all,” Ben whispered sharply.

On that they agreed too. Though, the requirements for admittance into the Underworld were somewhat murky. Ben had tried to explaining it but as far as Alice could tell, it mostly boiled down to just let in whoever she liked best.

Not that she was going to be letting anyone in, mind you. Being the God of Death was a temporary position.

Alice cracked a smile at Ben’s sniping. “Stop!” and then at Jimena’s strange look, “I mean, um, congratulations to you too.” 

The rest of the final contestants filed back into the room and introduced themselves.

“Whoa, dudette, that was a seriously awesome performance. Rockin’!” Deacon whistled, with an appreciative nod and a fist pump.

“Uh, thanks,” Alice replied, the influx of so many sims already beginning to make her uncomfortable.

“So, your friend, what’s his name? Oh right, Vladislaus. He’s so handsome and supportive. I think we talked to each other all night after the mixer!” Jimena cooed, this time with fake innocence.

Well, the joke was on her, Alice thought. Mister “Handsome and Supportive” was also a vampire and not a very nice one as far as Alice could tell. He couldn’t possibly be interested in any real commitment to someone who’s expiration date was so soon by comparison. Not that it was any of Alice’s business. Not that she cared. 

Ben snorted.

One of the producers swept in with release forms and other paperwork. “I trust you’ve all secured your lodging in Windenburg. Your flight is, of course, covered by the network but make sure you check into the airport at least two hours before your flight departs.”

Secured lodging in Windenburg? She didn’t remember Ben mentioning that, but she’d check with him once they were alone.

“Oh.”

Alice took a step back and turned away from the group. “What do you mean: ‘oh?’” she whispered. 

“Well, I had a lot going on what with the corporeal form the kitchen and the hotel…”

“Just spit it out!” Alice hissed under her breath.

“Uh…Alice?” Dylan asked.

Alice faked a coughing fit, and continued whispering furtively to Ben with her back still turned.

“What. Did. You. Do?”

“It’s more like what I did not do, if we’re going to get technical about it…”

“Ben!”

“I didn’t book lodging alright? I forgot. And if you think that as an all powerful being, I’m not embarrassed, then think again missy!”

Alice resisted the urge to scream. She put a hand to her forehead and then to her stomach. She couldn’t decide which was worse: feeling like she was going to faint or feeling like she was going to throw up.

She turned back to the group who all stared at her with matching looks of confusion and concern. 

“Yup, well, just got a little cake stuck in my throat so you know…” Alice waved her hands, “Choking is a real threat! Everyone should have a glass of milk at their stations…”

Baillee gave her a sympathetic nod. “I always tell Moira that the kids can’t eat that many spooky cookies without a glass of milk nearby!”

Jimena narrowed her eyes at Alice and then clapped her hands to get everyone’s attention. “Oh excuse me, listen up everyone! I’ve enjoyed getting to know all of you so much. I rented a huge chateau in Windenburg but it’s way too big for just me. I’ve got room for all four of you, what do you say?”

Everyone gasped and began talking all at once.

“Oh that sounds like a real vacation, how thoughtful of you, Jimena,” Bailee crooned.

“Dope, does it have a pool?’ Deacon asked. 

“I will need a quiet space for working on my abstract,” Dylan insisted.

“Anyone need to share a bedroom, or a bed?” Giancarlo growled, waggling his eyebrows.

Alice tried to cut through the commotion, “Wait, four? But there are five of us.” 

“Oh Alice, I assumed you’d want your own space. I’m sorry, there’s really only room for five people.”

“But you said it was huge!” Alice countered.

“Did I? Oh, I meant it’s the perfect size for me and four friends.”

Rory strolled up, “Hey, am I still invited to the chateau?”

Jimena turned to him and smiled, “Absolutely!” she gave him a wink and turned back to Alice. “Six. It’s really only got room for me and six friends.”

Alice blinked. Was she fucking kidding? They were adults for llama’s sake.

“So really you don’t have room for me?”

Jemina smiled, “Oh no Alice, I don’t. You know the saying: keep your friends close and your enemies closer.”

And with that, she turned on her heel motioning for everyone to follow. “I’ve got reservations at Villa Bovine so we can celebrate!”

Alice watched as her so-called co-stars followed Jimena with no questions asked. She would bet serious simoleons that there wasn’t enough room for her at the dinner table either. 

“Oh, hey let us know where you’re staying, dudette, maybe we can party!” Deacon called over his shoulder.

“I don’t think we should party with them,” Ben said, his tone severe.

“Well we can’t party anywhere if we don’t have a place to stay,” Alice replied testily.

Booking a last minute hotel in a huge city like Windenburg. How hard could it be?

    6 comments
  • Dolly Llama
    December 31, 2019

    Still confused about Jimena: girl, why the hell are you picking on the weakest baker? What a coward.

    I’m getting old-people-Facebook vibes from Ben and I love it. “Hello Google tell me where the nearest inn I can afford is, thank you, sincerely Ben”

    • feroshgirl
      January 2, 2020

      HAHAHAH thank you, it was 100% inspired by real life (my dad used to demand that I get rid of the little envelope on his phone because he didn’t understand what text messages were)

  • theplumbob
    July 8, 2020

    Honestly, Alice is far better off not staying with Jimena anyway – I know so far Jimena’s only been pocking on Alice, but I’m sure she has plans of sabotaging everyone there, so at least this way, Alice is further from her reach. Who knows, maybe Jimena will somehow end up helping her out, whether consciously or not. Maybe she works for the countess too – stranger things have happened!

    Definitely enjoying Vlad not being in a position of power with Alice, must be very tough for him haha. I’m also loving William and Caleb’s reactions to it all haha!

  • Yimiki
    February 11, 2021

    I think it’s a good thing that Alice doesn’t stay under Jimena’s roof. She’s your classical mean b*tch and I don’t doubt for a second that she would do everything she can to sabotage Alice and make her feel bad. If they share lodgings, Alice would never have a place to relax and unwind. This was probably a blessing in disguise.

    • feroshgirl
      February 11, 2021

      Oh, you are soooooo sooooo sooooo right.

  • DJ
    September 5, 2022

    8 months of autumn? White women everywhere are celebrating those 8-glorious months of pumpkin spice everything!

    Sorry. I forgot EVERYTHING i was gonna say when Vlad mentioned eating his cake, and looking as though he was enjoying the thought of that dessert 😉 My, oh, my!

    Every supernatural (and non-supernatural) take note: a summons with flower petals is THE way. Every other method is inferior.

    I’m surprised Ben didn’t hit Alice with a big I TOLD YOU SO when she typed what he said (basically) into the search engine.

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