Chapter was not supposed to take this long to make, but it was more of a situation where I didn’t have time to touch sims.
Warning : Dark pictures in the beginning
I mean, it’s what the books said I could do.
I’m not saying my power is 100% astral projection, but it sounds a whole lot like it, and they said I could float and phase through anything. I’ve phased through all sorts of furniture and doors, but can I phase through the floor? There’s no reason not to.
My hands fell through and the rest of my body followed suit. I didn’t float though, I just crashed right through the floors, into the basement. Good to know I can’t feel pain.
I lifted myself up and looked around. It was dark…we’d closed the lights last time I’d been here and I couldn’t switch any of the lights on in this form.
Dad’s magic was still pulsating at the door, this is the only way I can come check in on my jellybean treasure. I’d done a little bit more research on it. Most of it was a load of bull, but some alluded to the jellybeans mistakenly assumed to be magical. They were just extremely potent medicine. And depending on the color, by smelling or ingesting them you’d have different medicinal effects. It didn’t do anything miraculous like reattach limbs, but they could serve as antibiotics, to stimulate the nervous system, to increase blood pressure, and other similar things.
Well from what I vaguely gathered anyway.
I tried to make my way through the darkness, phasing through the odd fake rock or plant obstacle, till I found myself face to face with rough leathery skin.
I can hear it snoring still. Which meant we planted the jellybean…ah right over here.
I bent down and gestured in front of me till my hands felt a small bush. It had grown! That’s incredible! With just a little bit of water and no sunlight at all…I’m surprised they’re not a common thing.
“Nikolas!” I heard my name being called and I zapped back to my body.
“We have some visit coming over soon. Everyone is in the living room.”
The moment Nikita saw me she enthusiastically gestured at me to sit down beside her. “Come see this Niko, it’s all over the news.”
I sat down, giving Nato a quick pet as he lay down beside my shoes. He gave my shoelaces a few nips.
“What’s going on?” I asked, staring at scenes of a burning building.
“The other school across town was attacked.” Nikita explained. “A group of people with guns started rounding students up and asking for supernaturals to step forwards. They shot down the ones who did. And when the cops arrived three bombs set off in the school. It’s an absolute wreck.”
“It’s despicable and several steps too far.” Dad said from the kitchen.
I watched the words scroll down the screen: Anti-supernatural terrorist attack on local school.
“Are the students okay?” I asked. I know Nikita knew a few people in that school, and I knew a few from summer camp.
“Most of them. There were still a lot of casualties. They say the students are going to go to your school after the holidays.” Nikita replied. “Makes sense. There’s no way they’ll repair that in time.”
“Charlotte’s daughter was attending that school.” Pa said as the news switched to something else.
“Charlotte?” I asked.
“She’s the visit coming over. We haven’t seen her in several years. Her and her husband moved across the ocean. That’s where they adopted their little girl. They moved back just a year or so ago. They’ve only just recently had time to come visit.” Pa said, glancing outside through the frosted windows at the car that had just pulled up on our driveway.
My parents headed for the door to greet the visitors before they’d even rung the bell.
“We’re a bit early, I hope you don’t mind.” The woman probably called Charlotte said.
“We thought we would hit traffic.” The man, her husband, added.
The four adults started conversing right there on the spot as if they hadn’t seen each other in years (which is exactly what pa had said was the case).
Nikita and I slowly made our way into the entryway to get a good look at the visitors.
“Are those your kids? They’ve grown so much.” Charlotte said, smiling at us.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you.” Nikita charmingly said. I just gave a short wave.
“This is our daughter.” The man said, dragging a teen out from under the doorway. “Go on and socialize. We’ll be here a while.” He told her, needing to practically shove her in our direction.
Her eyes were glued to the floor when she reached Nikita and I, but I recognized her.
I’m surprised I did considering the amount of interaction I had with her at summer camp. But that purple hair is hard to miss…
And so are those eyes.
She looked up from her shoes and her face froze in shock when our eyes crossed.
Those intense purple eyes bore into mine, fear and then disappointment flashing through them.
For some gosh darn reason, I don’t remember her name.
“Hey I know you from summer camp right?” I asked.
She nodded with what looked like a strained smile. “Yeah….small world huh?”
Nato gave a weird cute puppy bark as he bounded over, demanding to be introduced.
We both looked down at him as he wagged his tail.
“That’s Nato…” I introduced, my voice trailing off as I looked at her shoes. What a weird pair of shoes. What a weird pair of familiar shoes.
Ohhh things were coming together in my mind and I was stunned into silence at the idea. I looked at the purple-eyed girl again and willed her to look at me.
Look at me so I can compare with the pair of eyes in my mind. Just look so I can confirm what I already know.
She waved at Nato with a small smile.
Just look up. Come on.
“I know it’s horrible, but I don’t remember your name.” I said, urging her to look up. And she did.
“Tatiana.” She replied after a short pause.
My heart was beating wildly. It was her. It was. It was her.
I can’t believe I didn’t see it before, but there’s absolutely no doubt about it now.
I thought about those eyes for weeks just wondering who they belonged to, and what they’d been doing at the bank. How they could be my age and threaten me with a gun. How they nearly shot me at the top of that cursed stairwell.
She tilted her head and Nikita poked me in the sides. “Can you at least blink, you’re being weird.” My big sister said.
“Right sorry I was just…” Putting two and two together? That means you recognized me at summer camp. That means you recognize me now. You know I was at the bank robbery. You know you nearly shot me. But you’re hoping I haven’t recognized you. Covered up in black from head to toe while your companions weren’t…you clearly have something to hide. You clearly don’t want people to join those two versions of you together.
Which means I’ll probably scare you away if I start asking you what you were doing there.
Which means I’ve got to be subtle…can I be subtle right now? Probably not. My heart’s still beating excitedly. And here I’d thought maybe I wouldn’t learn anything from that bank after the second robbery was such a disappointment. After I didn’t remember enough of their three robber faces to find them.
But she’ll be going to my school in January right?
I’ll have all year to pry the information out of her.
“No.” Venkat declared flatly as I made to leave.
“You heard me.”
I glanced at Maelig, who was leaning on the wall, listening to the music emanating from the headphones around his neck.
“You’ve gotta know when you’ve lost man.” Venkat said and I groaned. “You know I support you and your casanova adventures to the max, but this is getting a little extreme.”
Maelig joined in. “He’s annoyed because you keep ditching us to go see your ice queen.”
“And you’ve made no progress at all.” Venkat added with a snarl. “Give it up man.”
“And ruin my perfect reputation?”
“Hopeless.” Venkat said. Then he gave me a quick shove. “Fine run off. Don’t want you here anyway.” Venkat snapped around to Maelig before the orange-haired could speak. “Shut up.”
I headed for the library where the ice queen had gone to study for midterm finals.
She wasn’t the only one there.
Two girls I’ve already dated were chuckling to themselves by a bookcase. They snickered and glanced at Salandra, whispering things that only made them snicker more.
Queenie was doing a pretty good job of ignoring them, looking intently at the books in front of her.
It’s when I got wind of the word mother coming from their lips that she shot up on her feet.
She casually bumped past the two girls, and by bump I mean knocked the book Elaine was holding right out of her hands.
As it hit the floor with a thunk and as Elaine muttered a curse in her direction, she rounded the corner to go search in other bookcases.
To have Elaine and her friend on her case so much, she must’ve humiliated her or something similar. Elaine tried pulling the same things with me when I broke up with her.
I used to think Sal was weak and easily manipulated…but she’s turning out to be my hardest catch yet.
“Library’s no place for your type.” She said in a low voice, plucking a book from the shelf.
“I didn’t come for the books.” I said with a smirk, but she wasn’t looking.
She sat down and started reading.
I can’t seem to figure her out. Some days I can tell I’ve said the right words. Other times it’s as if she can’t stand the very fact that I’m breathing. And then there’s days like today where it seems like she couldn’t care less.
And those somehow end up being the hardest days.
Nikolas’ petty threat doesn’t scare me. His little astral thing pisses me off, there’s no doubt about it. He just can’t seem to understand that I’m trying to stay low here. But Nikolas isn’t the most observant when it comes to Sal and I. He doesn’t catch half the times.
I took the seat beside her, pleased that she didn’t get up. “Hey Queenie, whatchu reading?”
“A book.” She replied flatly.
My mouth opened to deliver some lines I had stored away, but…nothing came out.
It’s not because of Niko’s threat! Maybe I’m realizing this really isn’t working on Salandra? Or maybe I just don’t have the energy for it today.
She’d expected me to say something though. “What? No lame pickup line today?”
“Nah, I’ll just watch you today.” I replied.
She frowned slightly, her cheeks becoming a faint red. “Whatever.”
Guess I could’ve worked with that, but I really didn’t mind watching her. She’s not the prettiest in the school, but there’s more than one level of pretty I guess?
I silently cleared my throat, straightening up and pulling away from wherever I was heading off to.
“Your boyfriend threatened me, telling me to back off.” I said nonchalantly.
Her eyes stopped on her page, her grip tightened on her book and she bit her lip. Oh she was not happy with this news.
“I’m not weak.” She muttered under her breath as she kept reading.
No, you’re really not. And I wish you’d stop pinning for Niko.
It really pisses me off.
Oh I have to see this. And Salandra is on the same boat as me on this.
I mean just think about it….Nikolas…working.
HAHA gives me the damn giggles every time. He says it’s all to accumulate cash to get himself karate classes or whatever, but that’s not important. The cool part in this, is reckless impulsive Nikolas who doesn’t really, see never, listens to authority, suddenly becoming a working citizen who has to do what he’s told if he wants cash.
I don’t care that people have been rolling their eyes at me all day, this is pure entertainment.
Had to go through a third party to find out where Nikolas ended up working, but when we did find out, Salandra and I agreed to go crash this café.
We peered at the employee area, grinning like a pair of future troublemakers. Scratch that. Like the Niko fanclub we are.
Nikolas hadn’t seen us yet and he was busy talking to his supervisor. We leaned over our fancy table, trying to get Niko to notice us, but he turned and went into the back.
“He’ll come back out eventually.” I said leaning back. “We’ll just have to chat like actual customers while we wait.”
“How are you Elvis?” Salandra asked.
“Feeling mighty fine thank you. How’s the weather treating you?” I said, gesturing at the frosted window.
She chuckled. “No, I meant, how are things at home? With Dexter.”
She knows how to deflate a mood alright. “It’s fine.”
“He’ll wake up eventually.”
I breathed in slowly. “Some don’t.”
“It’s your little brother. You always used to tell me he annoyed you. He’ll wake up to annoy you again.”
“I wouldn’t be surprised!” I laughed. He wasn’t that annoying. My brother was a little angel. A sleeping little angel. “We can only wait and see for now.”
“You know if you need to talk I’m here right?”
Salandra’s too nice sometimes. “Sometimes I wonder if you’re the big sister I never had.” I teased. She grinned. “That wasn’t a compliment. I take pride in being the eldest!”
“There he comes!”
“What are you two doing here?” Niko asked, his hands on his apron. Yeah, apron. HAHA. He didn’t look angry that we’d shown up, just pleasantly surprised.
“We’re out on a date obviously.” I stated. Salandra kicked me under the table. “That was a joke obviously.”
“I figured.” Nikolas said with a short laugh. Yeah, Sal’s kick hadn’t been subtle.
“You look good in a chemise.” Salandra said with a straight face. Another thing you don’t see Niko wearing often.
Gotta hand it to her. She really made it sound natural even though she was wringing her feet under the table.
“Ugh. There are too many buttons on this.” Nikolas said. “And they wouldn’t let me wear my bandana. Something stupid about a safety hazard?”
Salandra’s eyes drifted down to Niko’s wrist. “You’re still wearing my gift?” A clear pleased undertone in her voice.
“Of course!” Nikolas grinned. “There wasn’t anything in the rules saying I couldn’t.”
I drummed my fingers on the table as they exchanged pleasantries.
After some smiles, Nikolas announced he needed to get back to work.
“I’ll be right back.” I told Salandra as I got up and followed Niko.
“Is this it man?” I asked, slumping onto a stool as Nikolas started putting away some plates. “Is this what I’m supposed to be? The damn third wheel?”
“What are you talking about?” He absently asked as he worked.
“Stop playing innocent.” I grumbled. “I’m playing innocent while you two are frolicking each other with looks and smiles.”
“Frolicking? Dude what the hell are you talking about?” Nikolas asked again. This time I had his full attention.
I sighed for a very long time. “You know. You and Sal.”
“Are you going to make me ask a third time?” He snapped.
“Geesus – I thought you at least low key realized it. I know goddamn flirting when I see it man.” I thought we had this thing where for some reason you faked not knowing what was going on. Not that you actually didn’t.
“What? No, no that’s-no. She doesn’t even like me that way!” Nikolas spouted out, seemingly unable to form a coherent expression let alone a phrase.
“Let me just rehinge my jaw for the utter nonsense you just spouted.”
“Ugh, I’m working right now.” He rolled his eyes.
“No no no you’re trying to make me believe you’re not clueing in to how she acts around you?” I asked. If we weren’t in public I would’ve slammed my hands on the counter from this nonsense.
“She’s like that with everyone. That’s just Sal.” Niko waved it off.
“Um no. Do I have a fancy name bracelet?” I said, trying to shove my wrist in his face. A bit difficult over a counter.
“That’s not a good point.” Nikolas said, clearly looking more and annoyed. Okay I guess that is a pretty weak one.
“Right, well then here-”
Nikolas looked at something behind me and gave it a short wave. I looked back to see Sal waving at us.
I turned back to Niko, opening my mouth to give him quite a torrent of examples of Sal’s obvious affection for him, but he cut me off.
“Look Elvis. Sal and I are just friends. Good friends. I thought you knew this.”
What a fucking dork. This is painful.
Sal’s just too charming for her own good.
that title be one hell of a pun y’all