Chapter 28, Part 1: The Wings Are A Lot

Laurel and Hodges Cemetery Crypts

Alice

Alice’s throat constricted. She didn’t know why or how, but she knew exactly what—who—he was.

“Have I ever explained the twelve guardians who live along the main river of the Underworld?”

Actually, scratch that. She knew how. And now all those stories Ben insisted on telling her made more sense.

For a moment, she panicked. It was a lot to take in. The wings. The fangs. The blood red eyes. He was the creature from her dream, though for the life of her, she couldn’t understand how that made sense. She’d never seen Vlad like this. And she had certainly never been lost in some kind of magical forest.

Did he know what she was too?

Vlad cleared his throat lightly, and she realized she was staring. 

“I…” but she couldn’t finish the sentence. Did he also have a head full of knowledge he never asked for and had no business knowing? 

He held his hands up, voice soft, and she could tell he was trying very hard not to scare her. “Alice…” 

“I…” She still couldn’t finish the sentence.

He lowered himself slowly to his knees. “I am not going to hurt you, I would never hurt you.”

She shook her head. Alice was one banana bread recipe closer to leaving all this supernatural shit behind. That’s what she had to focus on, repeated it to herself even as the sight of him on his knees, wings spread wide—as if in search of worship or absolution—threatened to undo her.

“I…have to…get up early,” she finished lamely, and then turned on her heel and ran. 

Behind her, she heard his pained growl, the sound of stone scraping on stone, but Alice kept running.

She did so until her heels clattered on the cobblestones above the crypts, until the landscape was almost nothing but stars and rolling hills, until she had no idea how she got herself back to the In Between Inn. 

He was beautiful to her. 

That’s what she wanted to tell him. He wasn’t a monster anymore than zombies or skeletons. He was precisely as the Underworld intended. Alice wanted to ask him a thousand things and let loose every strange secret she had kept for the last 16 years. But the implications of his existence threw all her plans for this being temporary into chaos. 

Before she set out on this journey, Alice felt like she was always alone, no friend in this world save for Ben. Now it turned out that had never been true and if she became normal in the next few weeks, she would abandon the only other thing in the Universe that shared her burden.

It was too much. Too big. Too scary.

She paused at door, something inside her begging to go back.

Things had spiraled since she left the confines of StrangerVille. And if she was being honest, she didn’t hate it.

In fact, she was good at it, so good that she worried about herself.

If she took so easily to ghosts and zombies and witches and monsters, what would she become? And would she still be Alice Martin at the end of it?


Credits

Pose Pack 25 by Katverse

Goth Poses, Male Stand Poses, Desperate Girl, Buffy Posepack and Scythe by Natalia-Auditore

Vampires Suck Poses by mememuru CC

TS4 Halloween Poses (Grave) by helgatisha

Sitting and Talking Poses by ratboysims

Paloma Dress by Colores Urbanos

From the Sims 4 Gallery

Run Down Country Manor by Aliceonthemoon5

Hollow Cemetery by Kaleidow (I cannot stress enough how absolutely stunning this lot is. Go download it!)

(Shout out to DollyLlama. I had a bit about how disorganized Ben is for a future chapter but a comment she made convinced me now was the time to foreshadow it.)

    7 comments
  • Dolly Llama
    May 11, 2020

    THAT’S the fucking blazer you wore for the spy mission, Bloodvein?! Dude, you have to check out donaeis at some point; her story is plumb stuffed with vampires who’ve long decided they were Too Hot For Fashion, so there are scary men pining for the Old World in a crop top, board shorts, white socks, and black boots, covered in tattoos and piercings. You want an ancient legion of vampires with matching club bracelets? You get an ancient legion of vampires with matching club bracelets.

    “Alice often accused him of being a pervert, but he didn’t stay with her when she was hooking up. He was bound to her life force, not her body.” Answering my pressing questions. Thank you.

    I’m getting supernatural vibes from Jimena. Faint ones, but I’m not convinced Vlad and Alice are the only two magic people in the lineup. I hope she represents something like Peace or Love or Hope and sees her cause as counter to fear/death because she doesn’t understand carrying capacities or what happened to the reindeer on St. Matthew Island. Also keeping a close eye on the background contestants.

    And now I can’t comment on the details because these two have decided to play catch with the idiot ball. In their defense, it’s hard to process and respond quickly to things they can’t predict happening, like casual necromancy or the word ‘courtship.’ And what the fuck is Vlad doing? Who let him watch Titanic?

    Thank you for putting these two scenes in the same chapter; it made it easier to put the pieces together. But holy shit, Ben. You’re playing a high-stakes comedy of errors and you can’t even write down the info someone broke the laws of spacetime to deliver? Maybe that’s why he thought misleading Alice about what the O.o.U. was supposed to undo was a good idea.

    • feroshgirl
      May 11, 2020

      I have never had more fun than when I am dressing Bloodvein. His choices are goddamn bananas. That blazer is tame in comparison to what he wears in future scenes. I need scary men in crop tops please, where do I find this story? God, I feel like wearing matching club bracelets is precisely what an ancient legion of vampires would do because an ancient legion of vampires would be completely unhinged. Less dark rituals, more “oohh look at these glow in the dark things! Let’s go on a rampage but make it fashion!”

      I like that it only took me 28 chapters to finally explain why Ben is not riding shotgun whenever Alice has sex.

      Wouldn’t it be crazy if every god got the same idea? Oh hey, I’ll just pop into this mortal body for a little while and win the contest so I can just unmake any other god who ever wronged me and I don’t care if thousands die in the process because my path is true and righteous? Wouldn’t it be depressing to find they are just regular sims caught in the middle of something extraordinary and since they aren’t the protagonist they just become cannon fodder?

      Which was one is it? I say, laughing maniacally. (I love, love, love Jimena. The things I have planned for her are diabolical)

      Okay, if you can defend Alice/Vlad in this chapter, then I haven’t made them too insufferable. Vlad has close intimate relationships with people who have his number and they are not fittin’ to let him get away with this lol. I cannot wait to post the second half of this chapter (some days Vlad-y is a homicidal maniac, some days he’s the original emo baby). I think Alice often comes off like she is more grounded but she is dramatic too. Don’t worry, they don’t get the opportunity to be idiots for very long.

      I’ve been obsessed with the idea that there don’t have to be “black” moments (the main characters do something unforgivable to each other for emotional journey reasons) in every romance ever since I heard Courtney Milan on a podcast talking about Yuri on Ice. I have no idea if I can manage to pull it off and still maintain the tension, but hey! That’s what extremely time-consuming side hobbies are for! Thought experiments.

      I’m glad this chapter helped illuminate some things! I’m always struggling with being too obvious or not obvious enough. Slowly but surely I am learning how to link pieces of the puzzle together in one or two chapters, instead of like…six. For all that Ben comes off like a funny sidekick, he is a god and arrogance is a defining character trait. In fact, everyone in this story is playing a high stakes game with other people’s lives and constantly justifying it to themselves.

      Does the end of the world show up with a horde monsters or just because it’s really hard to not be selfish and justify our own bullshit? Too soon?

      Next chapter includes the lines: “I wouldn’t call that Not Fancy” (thank you) and “If I can flay a sim alive, I’m sure I can handle a sage-forsaken pie.” Basically, I think one of your story wishes is about to come true.

      • Dolly Llama
        May 12, 2020

        Crop-top vampires show up in Xaos: https://donaeis.home.blog/xaos-index/ .
        Series of images representing wtf is even going on in Xaos, other than hilariously portraying the patriarchal power struggle as a pointless dick-measuring contest between whiny babies: https://donaeis.tumblr.com/post/189755859294/did-cai-really-get-abducted-in-his-birthday-suit

        Hmm, yeah, it would be crazy if everyone had the same idea. Hmm. I’m suspicious of the U.W.B.S. producers as well—what the heck’s their angle? Oh shit, are they using the owl as bait? Oh, shit. I’m going to keep throwing these speculations around, even if they’re wrong, because someone’s gotta.

        The pacing and info delivery was great here. You know what, I was originally defending the human compulsion to follow up “I want to date you” with “huh? ‘date?’ what could that possibly mean?”, but now that you mention it, I love a good romance between characters who are majorly fucked up in the same direction. Not enough to be familiar with romance story tropes in general, though, so this is my first time hearing of a black moment. That’s true! But it’s still more entertaining than my compulsion to get the whirlwind romance over with and see if the relationship will stand the test of time. Speaking of which, you’re asking the wrong person whether it’s the time to make bleak jokes, bruh.

        Ohohoh—so from the Part I in the title, I can deduce that it’s not Bernard, and there’s only one person who says ‘sage-forsaken’… I get your drift.

  • theplumbob
    July 9, 2020

    I’ve only had a chance to read the first part and don’t have time to go through the rest just yet, but argh, so many questions. Does Ben always have to have a conduit? Is the 13th beithday a pertinent time, or did he just reappear in Alice as soon as his last conduit died? Has Vlad met any previous conduits of the god of death (my guess is no, because I feel like he would have been drawn to them in some way like with Alice… though that was a different Vlad). Hm… hm….

    I’ll be back to read the rest later!

    • theplumbob
      July 9, 2020

      Ok I’ve finished the chapter and you didn’t disappoint! That date in the graveyard was everything I could have hooed for, the romance, the revelations, the fear of getting lost too deep. I just feel bad for Vlad because he thinks she’s scared of him now, poor thing.

  • Ninja Pink Sex
    September 30, 2022

    How the eff did Jimena NOT see Bloodvein? The satellites in space could pick him up with no problem. He had on THE BRIGHTEST blazer (and imo tackiest, but I find him obnoxious so if the blazer fits…). Fuck he’s like so creepy staring at her in her window, and this is just so excellently executed b/c (as I’ve mentioned before in our discussion) that when Twilight came out it was sexeh how Edward watches Bella sleep, but somehow we get the heebie jeebies when the nefarious vampire does the same (more or less). But now I’m sexually wired to want the nefarious vampire to be non-consensual (ew but not Bloodvein). Ugh, I blame Scream. Moving on…

    Whoa, Ben realized what Miko has been doing, and he handled the realization rather well! Er, at least I *think* he did, he seemed to be really stuck in his head the entire conversation, but I get it… time is running out and Alice is gonna die (Ben’s words, not mine).

    I’m getting a bit antsy b/c this was the first mention of GRIM REAPERS (plural???? Like are we talking different sims or is it just a bunch of Don Lothario’s running around like Billy from Scream, and omg why does that make me feel tingly elsewhere 0.o). Fucking-finally. I need to see this man hooded-up in the dark cloak of death. Ahem…

    “How do I know you’re not the criminal mastermind?” Alice accused. “You could be anyone with all of your secrets.”
    This, of course, was a cop-out. She was the one hiding big secrets, Vlad was just trying to avoid laying out all the emotional pain of his past life.
    A muscle ticked in his jaw.

    YO. What … WHAT … was that muscle twitch about? Is Alice onto something?!?!?! Because that is how I took that spasm. Mmmmmmmm. Interesting.

    This got a bit Titanic-y (not in a bad way) with Vlad wanting Alice to paint his portrait, and then he started stripping (okay, just his shirt but you know, I was enjoying where it was taking me), and then he’s like I want you to see me… really see me… and I was a little concerned how much I liked where this was leading, and then he popped into his FEAR form and I was like NOPE. HARD PASS. And Alice fucking surprised the shit out of me and was like YOU’RE FUCKING BEAUTIFUL, WTF, RUN. LMAO. Like my goodness this poor woman’s life is a mess. She wants the owl. She doesn’t want the owl. All understandable. She finds the God of Fear to be a beautiful creature. Like goddamn.
    I mean, she’d like graveyards regardless of Ben, but would she be attracted to the embodiment of Fear if not for Ben? Like maybe Ben isnt cock-blocking after all. He’s like, uh… cock-building?

    • feroshgirl
      October 8, 2022

      “if the blazer fits…” I. AM. SCREAMING. Watching someone through their window is HELLA creepy. What I will say is just to remember that characters can only see what’s from their perspective and uh…things aren’t always what they seem.

      Oh man, I forget which chapter Grim finally shows up but I am so excited for you to get to there.

      The muscle tick. Oof. Well listen, Vlad is hiding something big but that reveal comes in the next part and it turns out, Alice knows more than she realizes. But also, the muscle tick is that Vlad is onto her and he is like: are you really trying to redirect me right now?

      LOLOLOLOLOLOL I love that you were like: Knife Dick Vlad? Yes. Fear Form Vlad? Absolutely not.

      Ben is definitely cock-building. Alice is in denial about how deeply weird she truly is, even without being the God of Death Lol.

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