- Did I forget the cc for Akira’s ears again? Yes. But I promise, now that I’ve noticed it, I will work hard to amend it in future chapters!
- There is a weapon that is very clearly a lightsaber for reasons that boil down to Atashi77’s Young Padawan pose was awesome and I desperately wanted to use it. Yes, I am Star Wars fan but I’m pretty meh about the pack except for the Reylo possibilities.
- Here is some bonus content stuff in case you missed it. Mainly, a look at why this chapter was so annoying to shoot because SIMS WILL NOT BEHAVE. Also this chapter was a bear to write and I don’t know why lol.
- RIP Chadwick Boseman. When Black Panther came out, my family and I went to the theater at like 1 in the morning because we were so excited to see a superhero movie where the characters looked like us. I cried, got chills, and shouted “Wakanda Forever!” in the parking lot with my brothers. I know it seems like a small thing, but Chadwick gave us joy. He made us feel proud and powerful and as a black nerd, I am so incredibly grateful. It inspired me to write my own stories where the very special heroine with all the badass supernatural powers could also be someone who looks like me.
Britechester University Library
The part of himself that realized he’d let nearly a century pass between sexual partners was alarmed to find that his grand return was nothing to write home about. Spending the night with Dylan was supposed to set things in a groove and have William coasting along towards contentment and far away from pining over Morgyn.
Only it hadn’t quite worked out like that.
Just finding somewhere to go had exposed the fissures and cracks in William’s fantasy. Caleb had secured a house in the woods, protected by an outrageously expensive—his words—dryad spell. Any outsider they allowed in would have to be trusted implicitly and William was forced to grapple with whether or not Dylan made the cut.
Not that anyone in the household understood his predicament.
Or could be helpful.
Deacon’s answer was to just to “chillax” and “let things happen, bro.” Alice latched onto an off-hand comment he made about vampiric hearing and pressed him on how just how accurate that hearing was—specifically as it pertained to the location of the bedroom she shared with Vladislaus. Caleb told him to shut up, and then get a hotel room. Vladislaus looked him dead in the eye and announced, “You do not care for Dylan,” before misting out of the room. He only returned to a second later to explain that according to the book he was reading, William was “in denial.”
Never in his long life did he think that Vladislaus becoming more self-actualized and less of a murderous monster would be such an irritating process.
He ended up taking Caleb’s recommendation.
“Vulnerability is for morons,” the vampire advised, a sentiment that played in William’s mind over and over again throughout the night.
By the time he and Dylan headed out for their third coffee break, William was completely disengaged in the conversation. The whole walk to the cafeteria, all he could think about was the confident way Morgyn danced around the rooftop in that ridiculous suit and pirate boots. The Sage had a way of drawing William into a chase while simultaneously laying all of their intentions on the line.
He thought courting Dylan would be similar to courting Tobias. Both men were bookish, a little shy, far more interested in ideas than in action.
Though that wasn’t completely fair to his husband’s memory. Tobias had been booted from the archives and sent to the guard as one of Josef’s many punishments. The scholar emerged confident, brave, and a relatively decent swordsman. William was hard-pressed to imagine Dylan in any kind of dangerous situation.
As a mortal, William had longed to lay down his sword for a quiet life. But what about now? All these centuries later, is that what he was looking for? Was that who he still was?
Windenburg Island, Bjersten House
Vlad growled as he forcefully pounded the buttons on the electric stove, “I would not like a timer I would like to pre-heat, though what that means in relation to this infernal contraption is beyond me!”
“Relax would you? You just need to select the setting first and then put in the temperature,”—Alice looked around nervously—”Umm, are you sure we can be here? Whose house is this?”
“Mine,” Gwendolyn volunteered cheerfully as she walked into the room.
“You, hellion, are supposed to be in school,” Vlad chastized.
Alice’s eyebrows shot up, “You call her hellion? She’s a nine-year-old kid.”
“She’s a demon.”
“You’re ridiculous,” Alice scolded, “Hell is pretend!”
“And school is boring,” Gwendolyn said, pushing past them.
“School is important,” Alice insisted without enthusiasm, “You learn things and…read books.”
Gwendolyn waved her off. “I already read all of those books.”
She wasn’t being facetious. So limited was her school’s educational theory that Vladislaus was forced to raid Britechester’s Rare Book collection just to obtain appropriate material. During his nighttime hunts, he’d leave books in a box by her window and in turn, she’d leave notes about her progress. Her olde simlish verb conjugation was abysmal but her thoughts on 17th century Champs Les Sims politics had merit.
“Are you breaking my oven?” Gwendolyn demanded, scrunching up her small face.
“Your oven?” Vlad asked doubtfully.
“Fine,” she sighed. “My foster parents’ oven. Don’t break it. I can’t get kicked out. Even if they’re not he—busy. I mean if they’re too busy.”
Vlad hissed. Every time Gwendolyn mentioned being abandoned or ignored, it filled him with fury. For all their piety, witches were nothing more than animals when it came to treatment of orphaned children.
“I would dearly love to see them try. And then I would dearly love to make them regret it.”
Alice smacked him in the chest, “What ails you? You can’t kill her foster parents!”
“Can’t I?” He raised an eyebrow.
She hesitated, “I mean I’m…yes, technically…I’m just…I’m asking you not to. Not…er…commanding. We should…talk about stuff like that…”
“Not that your family is in any danger,” she added quickly, giving Gwendolyn a too bright smile.
She looked so delightfully off-kilter that Vlad had to bite back a laugh. He had forgotten this side of himself, the one that enjoyed teasing.
“Of course,” he assured her, eyes dancing with amusement.