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The Goth family is a family in my version of Pleasantview. It consists of Cassandra Goth, her younger brother Alexander, and our beloved Mortimer Goth.
The Goth family is the wealthiest family in Pleasantview, and unlike most other families, the bulk of their money is in cash.
Mortimer is the oldest living Sim in Pleasantview, after being successful in the science career and developing the infamous Elixir of Life. Cassandra is an adult now and is ready to start a family of her own, but little does she know that Don is not a good choice for her. Alexander is the classic child nerd, but is following his father's footsteps the best choice for him?
Cassandra is smitten with Don and wants to get hitched. Perhaps an affectionate gesture will put the relationship on strong footing.
Part 1. Riiiiiiiissseee and shine!Edit
It was just after 5am.
Alexander slept soundly in his bed. His slow but steady breathing was calm and tranquil, matching the overall mood of the morning. There wasn't a single cloud in the sky, and there will be no clouds for the rest of the day.
And it was a wedding day. A wedding day for the Goth family. A wedding day for Cassandra Goth.
For some reason, Alexander woke up. He stared silently at the ceiling above him, then rolled over in his bed to try and sleep some more. The bedsheets felt warm and snug, and he would've wanted to stay in bed forever.
He heard the door open... no, not his bedroom door. Sounds like the front door. When the room is quiet and you're all alone, all your senses seem to amplify and triple in effectiveness. That's what he felt now; his own breathing was louder than a rocket taking off into space.
He heard (and felt) the front door close. He could tell whoever used it tried to open and close it as softly as possible, but Alexander could feel it. He heard quiet footsteps creeping up the stairs. Out of curiosity, he got out of bed and tip-toed over to the door.
It was Mortimer, his cheerful, eccentric, yet very old father, bowed with age. He heard the door creak as it was opened and turned towards the sound. "Oh," he said, relieved to find only his dear son at the door. "It's just you."
"What are you doing being up so early, papa?"
"Oh... well, you see, today is Cassandra's wedding," Mortimer explained, "and I feel very restless right now. Whenever I'm restless at night, I tend to go out for walks."
"But why are you so restless, papa?"
"Your sister's getting married today, and when you watch your own children get married off, you will know..." his voice trailed off.
Alexander took a long, slow breath. "Well... I only hope Cassandra and Don are happy after this," he said.[note 3]
Mortimer gave him a long, hard look. "I hope so too... but I do not think it will happen." With that, he turned around and headed for the bathroom, mumbling something about "his days."
Alexander sighed and went back inside his room.
Part 2. A bride's morningEdit
The aroma of whole-wheat pancakes filled the kitchen. Cassandra inhaled deeply to feed her lungs with the scent only organic wheat could provide.[note 4] She savored the taste in her mouth before exhaling, almost reluctantly, to avoid blowing the aroma away.
Her stomach growled, angry that the lungs got the pancakes while it got nothing. Cassandra almost laughed. "The stomach," her father used to joke about, "is a bottomless glutton. Feed it anything and it will ask for more within a few hours. Yet it can never grasp the concept of storing fat so you don't have to eat."[note 5]
One by one the pancakes were removed from the pan and onto the platter. She carried the dish into the dining room, where Alexander was waiting patiently.
She looked around. Mortimer was nowhere in sight. "Where's pa?" she asked.
"I don't know," Alexander replied. "I last saw him go into the bathroom... that was two hours ago."
Poor old man, Cassandra thought. He must be defeated and deflated at the thought of my marriage. Mortimer and Don were mostly strangers to each other, but Cassandra could tell Mortimer didn't trust Don. But he had spoken little about his concerns, for he was having his own affairs with Dina Caliente.
What nobody in the Goth family knew, however, was that Dina cared nothing about Mortimer. She only wanted a cut of the Goth's immense fortune. If she could marry Mortimer, she would gain access to virtually all of the money in the family, and once Mortimer died, she would be free to do whatever she wanted! Mortimer, however, was completely unaware of this, and sought Dina for her "young and pretty looks," (as he once said while he was drunk and seduced) and as a suitable replacement for his mysteriously vanished wife, Bella.[note 6]
The family's only hope to prevent Dina from taking over the Goths was Mortimer's age. If he died sooner than the marriage, Dina would be able to inherit a small portion of money, but would otherwise be unable to gain access to the family's bank accounts.
Cassandra had something to pray about. She either had to delay the marriage between Dina and Mortimer, or pray for her father to die sooner. Sounds morbid.
Mortimer walked into the room, waking Cassandra from her thoughts. "Sorry for being late," he said in a tired voice. "I, erm, wasn't exactly blessed by the sweet dreams fairy last night."
Cassandra nodded. "Maybe some hot food will make things better." She helped her aged father into his seat before serving him a plate of hot, sizzling flapjacks. Not one minute passed after Mortimer was served did he nod off and fall face-first into his breakfast.[note 7]
"Well, talk about being very tired," Cassandra thought aloud. Alexander giggled slightly as his father snored, the sound muffled and distorted by the pancakes. Cassandra tried to eat quietly, but her father was just being too much of a clown.
Just then, the doorbell rang.
"I'll get it," Cassandra quickly said before Alexander could jump out of his seat. "Keep an eye on dad." She got out of her seat and headed towards the door.
"Look who's here so early in the morning for my special day!"
Mary-Sue Pleasant wore a nervous smile and a dress that seemed just as nervous as her smile. "Well... even though my own marriage has gone up in smoke,[note 8] I figured I won't let that stop me from watching my good friend tie the knot."
"Oh yes! I... I'm really, really sorry..." Cassandra began, her smile quickly giving way to a look of regret.
Mary-Sue waved it off as if she were waving off a fly over her month-old fruit salad. "Pah, who cares? Daniel was an odd mop-kisser anyway, and I got rid of that maid like a slice of moldy cheese. With the exception of my daughters, the house is at least free of trouble.... although Don did act strangely at my place."
"Yes, I noticed too. I hope it's nothing serious..."
Mortimer snorted like a pig. Alex turned around in his seat to conceal his laughter, with limited success. His father looked up, his face dripping with maple syrup.[note 9] He looked like a little boy who played in the mud.
Mary-Sue entered the dining room and chuckled at the sight of Mortimer. "At least your father really likes your cooking!" she said jokingly to Cassandra. "He likes it so much, his face needs a taste of it too."
Alex tried to hide his eyes, but Mortimer wouldn't allow it. He started mooing like a cow, which triggered more laughter from his youngest son. His eyeballs rolled like googly eyes, and his tongue stuck out in a raspberry. He began mimicking the noise of about a hundred different farm animals. Even Mary-Sue couldn't help but laugh. Cassandra smiled weakly and turned mauve in the face.
Not on my wedding day, please!
She would soon realize that her father's comedic show was the only bright part of her wedding day.
Part 3. The path to commitmentEdit
As the morning progressed, more and more guests showed up for the big event. The next three after Mary-Sue were the Burbs. John, Jennifer, and Lucy all showed up, dressed in their finest clothing.
"Where's Daniel?" Cassandra asked.
"He's not feeling well, but he wants a slice of wedding cake!" Jennifer pointed to a Styrofoam food container wrapped in a plastic shopping bag. "Do leave him a slice."[note 10]
Mary-Sue fell silent at the sound of her husband's name. Cassandra sensed this immediately and said, "Oh relax, Mary-Sue. It's just a small thing for him."
Next up were the Dreamers. Dirk Dreamer showed up at the doorstep, albeit missing his father. "Where's Darren?" Cassandra asked.
"He went to Mate's to get some food for the party," Dirk replied.
"But this isn't potluck!"
"He knows it isn't, but he still wanted to contribute something. Also..." Dirk motioned for Cassandra to come closer, "...he seems a bit hyperactive and over-caffeinated. I've never seem him this excited before."
The Oldies soon followed, overjoyed at the sight of their adopted daughter. "Mary-Sue, it's been so long since we've heard from you!" Coral said, embracing her daughter. "Please do not remain silent in your ocean of troubles!"
"Where are your daughters?" Herb asked.
Before Mary-Sue could answer, Cassandra piped in: "They're at home, both of them ill with stomach flu."[note 11]
"Ah, too bad." Herb turned towards the front door. "Well, if it isn't for the father of this young, enthusiastic bride!"
"Herb!" Mortimer and Herb embraced. "It's been too long since we've last met. Do you ever plan on moving to Pleasantview? It's beautiful here!"
"Thanks, but no thanks. Maybe you should move up to beautiful Duchene,[note 12] where all the houses overlook the crystal clean river!"
"Ah, I'll pass. Pleasantview's my home, ever since my family founded Sunset Valley back in the old days.[note 13] My roots have settled in this town, and I intend to live it to my fullest!"
"Whatever you say, old Morty." Herb reached down and picked up a young Alexander Goth, running around the yard playing tag with Lucy Burb. "And I assume your little one here will be taking over the town once he grows old?"
"If he wants to!" Mortimer watched as Alexander took off as soon as his feet touched the ground. "He's young, energetic... naïve..."
"We all were, Morty. We all had to be."
Mortimer nodded. "But I haven't yet told him about our town's past battles with the... the..."
"Altos?" Herb scoffed. "I've heard about them. When I was a kid I saw that flamin' Nick Alto on TV! His belly was so big, it looked like he just ate a sandcastle at the beach. Never liked that man."
Cassandra overheard the conversation and came to their sides. "Now, now, not on my wedding day!" she scolded. "Save the history lesson for another time!"
"Erm, well, as I was saying," Mortimer said, giving her daughter a nervous smile. "After many years of resisting the Altos, they eventually lost interest in the town and left, especially after that fraud scandal that tarnished their reputation in the city." He smiled. "Nick and Vita were jailed, and the town was saved."
"Long story short," said Herb. "But your daughter would rather I not go through the gory details."
"Father, why don't you help me get the rest of the chairs set up?"
Mortimer smiled. "We should hire a butler!" he said towards Herb before heading towards the back yard.
Just then, a man's voice shouted, "Dirk!"
Dirk Dreamer turned around and headed towards the source of the cry. "What?! Are you crazy? Why did you buy this much?"
"No questions! Just... help me with these bags, alright? Be careful with the big one, or you'll spill the soup!"
"Cassandra's favorite," Darren whispered into his ear. "Just get these into the house, I think the dining table will do for now." He looked around. "Where's Cassandra?"
"She's in the back yard setting up the chairs."
"Good! When the caterers come, help me move the food to the buffet table!"
As the food passed by, the guests on the front lawn took big sniffs.
"So delicious!" John exclaimed.
"So aromatic!" Jennifer added.
"Someone cooked up some love," came Coral's reply.
"It's good food!" Alexander and Lucy shouted.
"It's good money," Darren said. "This is no Betty Crocker![note 14] Awesomeness is baked, broiled, grilled, poached, steamed, boiled, and fried into every bite!"
The Brokes were next. Brandi took a whiff of the air and exclaimed, "Wow! This must be Foodland!"[note 15]
"Better than anything we've had recently," Dustin commented.
"And who's this?" Herb asked. "You have a bouncing young toddler! How old is he?"
"Three. He turns four in a week!" Brandi replied.
"Well, isn't he just adorable!" Herb lifted the young tot off the ground until he squealed with delight. "Not an aviator, I see. Time for his first flight!" Herb dashed around the yard, carrying young Beau with him as both laughed and screamed with delight.
"See that?" Brandi said, poking Dustin in the shoulder. "Why don't you play with Beau with that kind of enthusiasm?"
A black sedan pulled up and parked neatly on the side of the road opposite of the house. A man dressed in a black business suit, white-collar, and black tie emerged and headed towards the house.
"Ah, Reverend Graham Rooney..." Mortimer began.
"Please, please," the man said, "it's 'Pastor' Graham Rooney. 'Reverend' was a title I had many years ago."
Herb came up. "Ah, Reverend Graham Rooney! It's been a long while..."
"Indeed it has Herb... but it's 'Pastor' Graham Rooney now."
"Oh... I see. Well, it's been many years since we last talked, so I didn't know how much you changed since then!"
Cassandra and Mary-Sue came out of the house. "Reverend—" Cassandra began.
"Please, Cassandra, it's 'Pastor' now," the man replied.
"Oh? You got promoted?" Mary-Sue asked.
"Well..." the man smiled, "...not necessarily 'promoted', just took on more responsibilities. I see you two have changed a lot over the years as well."
"I got more wrinkles than before, my hair's losing its graceful structure, and I could use a tan." Mary-Sue sighed. "I'm not as young as I used to be."
Just then, Darren Dreamer came around. "Reverend Graham Rooney!" he exclaimed. "How joyous of you to come!"
"Mr. Dreamer, please, I'm now 'Pastor' Graham Rooney."
"Oh... I'm sorry, I didn't mean to..."
"That's alright," the man replied. "It's been a while since I visited Pleasantview, so a lot of people don't know what happened to me since then. But..." he turned around and looked at his aged car, "...I made it in one piece!"
"So.... Pastor Graham Rooney... what's changed since you last visited?" Mortimer asked.
"Ah, too much to recall all in one moment. But I can say that, after my last visit to Pleasantview, I moved to the city and lived there for a few years, working and preaching in some of the roughest neighborhoods." He straightened his glasses and cleared his throat. "Not the best working conditions, but I suppose someone has to come to those souls."
"I've been there before," Herb replied. "The people there look pretty rough, but they're very benevolent once you get to actually know them. It's a shame most people up here in the 'burbs don't understand them."
Just then, Jennifer and John came out from the backyard. "Oh hello, Reverend..." they began.
"Oh, for goodness sake!"
Only one person was missing from the wedding now — the groom.
Parked a block away from the Goth's manor was Don Lothario's car. Inside, Don watched through a pair of binoculars as the wedding preparations went underway.
"God! I can't do this!"
Don grimaced. He had to pee. Again.
Was it the coffee I drank this morning? Or maybe the lime soda... no wait, maybe I shouldn't have drunk so much tea last night!
Or maybe it was the thought that, by the end of the day, he would either be married and be stuck with his new wife, or crash and burn and be stuck at home alone.
Why does the world hate me?!
Don squatted by the pavement, trying his best not to get his fancy suit dirty. Checking once again to make sure nobody was watching, he squeezed his eyes shut and gasped. A small stream of water came out, trickled onto the asphalt, ran under his car, and straight into a storm drain.
Sorry, fish.[note 16]
Don got up, fumbling with his belt. He hated tight, restrictive clothing that did nothing but just look nice. This is like a torture device for my body, a self-imposed, portable prison, he thought.
His cell phone rang. He was so startled that he practically flew up into the air and landed on the roof of his car. He fumbled with his phone for a bit before he was finally able to answer: "Hello?"
"Don? What took you so long to pick up?"
Darren Dreamer. "Um, nothing... I was just taking a shower when you called!"
"Whatever. Now, where the hell are you? Don't tell me you forgot about the wedding!"
"No, of course I didn't forget... I'll be there soon, don't worry."
"And remember, refuse the ring. I know you'd rather jump into a river filled with piranhas than to marry Cassandra and later get caught for some real affairs. Just make sure you have that public apology written down so that you have something to say to the presses when they show up. You understand?"
"Don't worry about the apology. I have it all covered." Don sucked in air. "So, uh, how's Cassandra?"
"Cheerful and elated. She's happy to marry you. Shame that smile will vanish from her face soon. Hey, don't worry, Don. It'll be my chance to make things better for her."
"Or for worse."
"I can imagine the face on old man Morty as he watches me dump her daughter, and who knows? He might just forbid anyone else from marrying Cassandra for as long as he lives."
"He's got very little time left. Besides..." There was a pause.
Darren was wondering if he should tell Don that Dina Caliente, one of his countless lovers, was trying to marry Mortimer Goth, but decided not to at the last moment. "Eh, nevermind. See you at the wedding!" *click*
Uh oh. Butterflies in stomach. It's wedding day today. And the beginning of his end.
Don sat in his car and sobbed.
Part 4. Where's Don?Edit
A van pulled up in front of the Goth manor, marked with the logo of a large chef's hat accompanied by a turner.[note 17] The driver got out and smiled at the guests.
"Ah, Dr. Goth," the driver said when he saw the aged scientist. "How goes your dull, retirement years?"
"About as interesting as fun as sitting in a chair from dawn to dusk staring up at a popcorn ceiling!"[note 18] The old man rubbed his eyes. "It has also messed up my eyesight. Tell me, are my pupils still pea-sized or have they shrunk to minuscule proportions?"
"Hehe! Well, they always say 'The small is mighty.' And if worse comes to worse, you're always welcome to wear those old persons glasses with potato-sized lenses!"
Just then, Cassandra came out of the house.
"Perfect! Just in time, too! Let's get these set up in the backyard."
As the caterers moved their equipment into the yard, Darren and Dirk got together the overpriced food they had purchased and headed outside.
"That's some heavy stuff! Here, let me help you!" Handing his bags to Dirk, he rushed over and enthusiastically helped the caterers, whistling loudly with jubilation. "I'll take that... oh my, it's heavy! ...how are you on this fine day? ...I didn't know you had silverware!"
"What's with him?" Brandi asked.
Well, he was hoping to be the backup groom, Dirk wanted to say.
"Dirk! The table's ready, so bring those bags over!"
Dirk sighed quietly to himself and headed towards the table.
"...but we're..." the caterer was speechless when the bags were opened and the contents unpacked. "I thought we were doing the catering!"
"More is always better," Darren said. "You can still get your things set up! The guests won't mind having more to choose from."
The caterer nodded and smiled weakly. Dirk rolled his eyes.
Cassandra came out of the house and gaped at the scene. "I thought only Jesus could feed five thousand with so little!"[note 19]
"Don't worry, Cassandra. I took the liberty of buying some extras for your wedding." He sampled some of the falafels. "These aren't too bad, actually." He offered one to Cassandra. "Want some?"
The bride blinked. What...? Cassandra had known Darren for some time now as a good friend, but Darren was acting as if he were the father right now. Darren was normally quiet and withdrawn, and normally kept to himself or his family. He rarely spoke to strangers, especially with great enthusiasm, and always needed to play a few icebreakers before he could hold a steady conversation with someone new. But today, he seemed to have undergone an unnatural transformation, as if he had walked through a magical portal and had his personality flipped. He seemed so... un-Darren Dreamer.
"Cassandra...?" Darren looked concerned. "You look a bit bewildered. Are you okay?"
"Uh..." Cassandra cleared her throat. "Thank you for the offer, but I think I'll save it for after the knot-tying." She looked at the caterers and tried to smile. "He's... just a bit excited for my special day."
Mortimer was watching the scene unfold from a distance, and he motioned for his daughter to come over. "What's up with Darren Dreamer today?" he asked.
"I honestly don't know," Cassandra replied.
"Did you sprinkle fairy dust over him to seduce him or something like that?"
"No... why would I do that?"
"Because he's acting like he's the groom today!"
"I don't know about him..."
"You sure he's not the real groom and that Don Lothario hasn't been drugged and kidnapped?"
"Speaking of Don Lothario... where the heck is he?"
The two looked around. The guests were all casually chit-chatting with one another. Herb was playing peek-a-boo with young Beau; Dustin and Dirk were hanging out by the garden; Coral, Mary-Sue, and Jennifer were catching butterflies; John, Alex, and Lucy were playing tag; Brandi and Darren were sampling the selections on the buffet table. No Don Lothario. No Dina and Nina Caliente. Only the former mattered, though.
"I'll give him a call," Cassandra decided. She took out her cell phone and dialed for Don Lothario.
"I'm sure he'll show up soon," Mortimer added. "And if he doesn't, at least there's more food on the buffet table for me!"
"Oh, uh... hi Cassandra." There was some nervous shuffling and wrinkling of fabric. "I'm, uh, just getting ready to go... I, uh, just got in the car..."
"Car? It's only a five minute walk!"
"But it's only a one minute drive...[note 20] Hey, don't worry Cassandra. I'll be there before 11..."
"But it's 11:05..."
"Okay... I'll be there in one minute!" And with that, the town womanizer hung up.
What's wrong with him? Cassandra thought. Has he swapped places with Darren Dreamer?
"Well?" Mortimer asked. "What's of him?"
"An empty shell devoid of his original personality."
Deep breaths, Don. Deep breaths.
Don fidgeted uncomfortably in his seat. He looked into the sun visor's mirror and adjusted his tie, his hair, and his mustache.
Stay calm, Don... you can do this...
More fidgeting. Don did a quick smell check. Wasn't looking good. His perspiration had built up under his fancy suit, and his undershirt was soaked. It smelled of blue cheese[note 21] mixed with salt and vinegar.
And the demons that have made my life so miserable right now!
His courage was coming back. Slowly, he could feel strength returning to his arms. Color returned to his face. He looked at the mirror. Not in great shape, but he was at least strong enough to carry on.
Well, except for one more thing.
Don quickly got out of the car and hid behind it. In record speed, he managed to undo his belt like an Olympian, lower his pants like a nudist, and squatted like a gymnast. He closed his eyes and began to relieve himself...
Sh*t. Don immediately pulled his pants back up, fumbling with the belt. He did his best to cover his manhood and turned towards the direction of the sound.
The Caliente sisters.
"Don?" Dina repeated. "What in the name of Christ are you doing?"
"Uh...." Now this was an embarrassing moment! "Uh... I just..."
"Why are you dressed so formally?" Nina asked. "I thought you hated this type of clothing."
"Uh... I, uh..." Where was his charisma when he needed it the most? "Well, I was just going to..."
"To the wedding?" Dina asked.
"I heard something about a wedding today," Nina commented. "What, are you going?"
"I thought you didn't like weddings."
Don smiled weakly and nodded. "Yeah... just going to the Goths' wedding party! I'll, uh, catch you later!" Don scrambled back inside his vehicle, shut the door, and started up the engine.
"Hold it!" Nina said, striding up boldly to the car. She put a hand inside the rolled-down drivers side window. "Something's fishy with you, isn't it?"
Dina came through the co-drivers window. "Hmm, Don? Have a secret you have to tell us?"
His heart was practically beating out of his chest! Normally, such a scene would make Don feel right at home. "I'm surrounded by all these beautiful ladies!" he would've exclaimed. But today, the sisters were making him feel more and more trapped, as if the walls of his prison cell were closing in.
Anything to make this stop! Oh Lord, make it stop!
"C'mon, Don. You're not a shy one, aren't you?"
"You can tell me anything, Don. Anything. I promise, I won't tell another soul."
"You can tell me anything. Don't trust Dina over there."
Don lost it. "I admit it, I admit it!!" he wailed. "I'm engaged to Cassandra Goth and today's the day we get married. And I love you both! I love you both! And Kaylynn Langerak too! Oh gawd, why??!!" He wanted to bury his face into the steering wheel and sob, but he couldn't do that. Not now! Not when the situation is so critical! "I gotta go." And with that, he stepped hard on the gas.
The car shot forward, accelerating with such speed that it surprised even its driver.
Dina and Nina fell flat onto the pavement.
"Don!" they yelled after the car. "Don, how dare you!"
Cassandra fiddled with her watch impatiently. Where is Don? she wondered. He's late for his very own wedding!
Pastor Graham Rooney came out of the house. "Is the groom here yet?" he asked.
"He may as well be on Mars!" Mortimer replied. "I don't know why he's late today."
"Maybe he had an accident?"
"Accident? He lives only a five minute walk away from here!"
"He said he was driving here for some reason," Cassandra said.
"Well, I drove," the pastor said, smiling.
"He lives very close by. He shouldn't need four wheels and a leather seat." Cassandra looked at her watch again. 11:10 AM. Ten minutes late for his own wedding...
Just then came the screaming of rubber on asphalt. Cassandra and the two men looked up to see Don's car fly right past a stop sign, well beyond the speed limit, passing the house with a ZING! It took a few seconds before Don managed to get the car to slow down and stop. The three watched with a mixture of bewilderment, relief, and revulsion as Don backed up the car towards the house, the smell of rubber pungent in the air.
The windows rolled down. "Hi," Don said. "Sorry I'm late."
Cassandra looked at the tire tracks on the road, then at the car, back at the tracks, and finally at the driver of the car itself. "That took a long time."
Mortimer and and Pastor Rooney stared at the car, blinking with surprise, before they recovered and said, "Well, I see the wedding can carry on!"
Don climbed out of the vehicle and locked its doors. "So.... I see we'll be happily together after ever today," he said nervously.
Just then, Darren Dreamer came around. "Don Lothario!" he said exuberantly, striding up towards him. "I see you're here at last!"
Don felt like strangling Darren in his tight, uncomfortable wedding clothes, but fought to control his anger — and his dread. "Uh huh... yes, I'm here," he said, smiling weakly.
"Come," Pastor Rooney said, "Come, Miss Cassandra Goth, Mister Don Lothario... your big moment awaits!"
Part 5. I do...Edit
Okay Don... this is your big day... man up, Don! Man up!
Except he couldn't.
Don's eyes shifted to his left. Everyone at the party had seated themselves neatly in the array of chairs set out before the altar. Pastor Graham Rooney was to his right. Cassandra was right in front of him. Oh Lord, he thought, Everyone's watching me!
Pastor Rooney smiled at the soon-to-be newlyweds. Cassandra was dressed to her best, both in clothing and in her body language. Today was the big day, the day that she had been waiting ages for. Finally, she was ready to start a family of her own!
Don took a nervous glance at the audience again. Mortimer Goth was sitting in the front row. But of course — which proud father could possibly miss out on seeing his eldest daughter tie the knot? Don knew that he was not on the best of terms with the old man, but Morty was trying not to let that get to his head. He smiled, or at least tried to, as he watched the man rumored to have been at least partially responsible in the disappearance of his wife prepare to marry his daughter.
Don saw Alexander, Cassandra's younger brother. He was seated next to his father, scratching his itchy suit, impatient for the big moment to happen. Next to him were the three Burbs: John, Jennifer, and little Lucy. In the row behind them sat Mary-Sue Pleasant and the Oldies. Across the aisle in the front row were Dirk and Darren Dreamer. Darren was excited — and nervous — at the same time. He caught Don looking at him and nodded slightly, as if to say, "Remember our deal!" Behind them were the three Brokes, with Brandi struggling to keep Beau still in his chair. She eventually gave up and sat the young tot on her lap. And, of course, the hired caterers, who were watching the ceremony from their stations.
"We have gathered here on this glorious, sunny Saturday to join these two Sims together in holy matrimony," the pastor began.
Cassandra's skin tingled with excitement. It's about to happen, it's about to happen!
"I am no meteorologist, but I do have to make a comment about yesterday's weather. Rain, rain, and more rain, and I feared that today's wedding would be a washout." He inhaled, taking in a breath of the fresh, crisp air. "But today, we have been blessed by sunshine, and it serves to be an important reminder that life is like the weather. Some days it will rain, and oftentimes it is unpredictable, but the sun will always shine again."
Mortimer fidgeted in his seat. Don't do anything stupid to my daughter, Don!
"Marriage is a declaration of true love. True love is a sacrifice. And a sacrifice isn't something to take lightly. Our God the Father, Creator of all of Creation, sent God the Son, whom we all know as Jesus, to make the ultimate sacrifice — His very own life. First John chapter four verse eight says, 'Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.'[note 22] Nothing expresses love more than one's voluntary sacrifice of their life to save others."
Mary-Sue glanced nervously at Don. I hope you don't wind up being a broccoli-sniffer like my husband!
"Today marks the beginning of a very special commitment, and a very special sacrifice. Marriage is when two become one; when a man leaves his family and is united to his wife, and together they become one flesh.[note 23] Marriage translates into an intimate commitment between both parties, one that will stand the test of time, and a sincere declaration of love. Marriage can thus only be administered by God Himself, a God of love."
John and Jennifer held hands. Now you're about to experience the joy of being together!
Pastor Rooney turned to Cassandra. "Cassandra," he said gently, "do you take Don to be your wedded husband? Do you promise to love him, comfort him, and keep him, in sickness and in health, remaining faithful to him for as long as you both shall live?"
Don could feel the tension in the crowd. All eyes were on Cassandra. Even the birds had stopped chirping to avoid interrupting the big moment.
There were tears in Cassandra's eyes. She looked at Don, then back at the pastor, and said softly, "I do."
Don could feel some of the audience members breathing a sigh of relief. Mary-Sue smiled at her friend. Beau had gone back to scrambling around in his original seat. But Mortimer and Darren weren't finished just yet. They still had one more person to go to before they could finally relax... or explode.
Pastor Rooney exercised great patience. He was no stranger to weddings, and no matter how excited he felt, he always remained quite calm. He turned to Don. "Don," he said gently.
Don very nearly wet himself! His bladder had gone from content to flashing emergency sirens in a heartbeat. The sweat built up on his skin in great quantities, and his undershirt grew damp and sticky. Oh no.... here he comes, here he comes! He's going to ask me.... he's going to ask me...
"...do you take Cassandra to be your wedded wife?"
"Do you promise to love her..."
"...and keep her..."
I don't know... can I?
"...in sickness and in health..."
As long as I don't have to pay the medical bills.
"...remaining faithful to her for as long as you both shall live?"
No! No, just no!
But the words never came out, much to his relief... or displeasure? Now everyone was looking at him. Cassandra was looking at him. Pastor Rooney was looking at him. The caterers were looking at him. Mortimer and Darren were especially looking at him.
I've been put up on the spot! This is a stage, and the spotlight is on me! And I have forgotten my lines!
Don opened his mouth to speak, but nothing came out. He tried again, but still, nothing. His mouth hung agape, and he knew he had to say something soon before the flames of hell crept up his legs and charred him like fish on the grill. The walls of the world were closing in on him like a trash compactor, and the forces of nature began to squeeze and compress him outside-in, like a pressure cooker.
Don wasn't entirely sure whether he said that out loud or not, but he didn't wait to see the results. He turned on his heels, turned away from the crowd, and ran.
He had never run so fast before in his life.
There was no reaction, or at least, none that he felt or heard. He ran, the soft grass of the Goth's well-tended lawn feeling like overgrown weeds clawing at his legs. He ran, the sounds of his footsteps echoing on the solid footpath. He ran, the sounds of his hands pulling the keys to his car out of his pocket, struggling with the remote. He ran, until he reached his car, fumbling with his hands to avoid dropping the keys. He scrambled inside, slamming the door after him, and jabbed the keys into the ignition. There was a pause, then a cough, and the sound of the engine coming to life. He floored the gas, sending the car lurching forward violently, and he hit the curb hard. The car shook and quaked vigorously as he struggled to navigate the vehicle over other people's lawns and sidewalks. He plowed through a wooden fence. He knocked over a trash can. His right side-view mirror disappeared as he sped past a large oak tree. Finally, he managed to get the car back onto the public road, and from there, he drove off into the distance.
The crowd was silent. Every one of them were too flabbergasted to speak. Cassandra stood frozen in place like a statue, too shocked to comprehend what had happened. John and Jennifer's hands dropped as the two stared at each other. Even Pastor Rooney was completely stunned. Darren wanted to cheer, but he managed to control himself and hold it in. You did it, Don! he wanted to say. You ditched Cassandra!
At last, Mortimer broke the silence: "Well, I should've known; I should have known that slimeball was up to no good!"
- The Goth family's story begins on a Saturday.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 The Hula & More mod was used while taking this photo.
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 The Freezer Clock mod was used while taking this photo.
- ↑ Can Cassandra and Don really be happy with their marriage? Cassandra wants a steady relationship, but Don Lothario is the town womanizer, and he can't possibly handle a commitment!
- ↑ Is there really a difference between organic foods and non-organic foods? This is up for some serious debate. Some would say organic food is healthier and less risky, while some say GMOs are the solution to an ever-growing world. One thing is for sure — you're still fed at the end of the day.
- ↑ See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RehCW0KM8RM
- ↑ Bella Goth was reportedly last seen on the rooftop deck of Don Lothario's condo. After that, it's likely that she got abducted by aliens.
- ↑ With University, Sims who got very tired while eating would fall asleep in their plate of food.
- ↑ See Fanon:Pleasant family (K6ka).
- ↑ Want a little maple syrup trivia from a Canadian like me? Okay. Québécois (residents of Québéc) often refer to "imitation maple syrup" (such as table syrup, which is nothing more than corn syrup with lots of sugar and artificial flavorings) as sirop de poteau (literally "pole syrup"), calling it "maple syrup tapped from telephone poles." Seriously, true maple syrup comes from trees. Get it through your thick skulls, Americans.
- ↑ See Fanon:Pleasant family (K6ka). After Daniel Pleasant was kicked out of his house, the Burbs took pity on him and let him stay at their place.
- ↑ This isn't mentioned anywhere else, so I figured now would be a good time. Cassandra, in this sentence, is obviously lying, at Mary-Sue's wishes, in order to conceal the Pleasant family's internal struggles. Word has gotten out to the Oldies that Mary-Sue had filed for divorce and was suffering from a broken heart. It is implied in this sentence that Mary-Sue had asked Cassandra to help her keep the fact that her own daughters had become hostile to her private.
- ↑ Duchene is an entirely fictional location that isn't referenced in any official game or media. It is first referenced in part 6 of the Pleasant family story.
- ↑ See Sunset Valley.
- ↑ Betty Crocker is an American brand name and trademark, owned by General Mills. It is known for its baking mix for cakes, pancakes, and brownies, among other products.
- ↑ This is a reference to the Foodland supermarket chains in Canada.
- ↑ Storm drains do not always connect to the sewage system. In many cases, storm drains carry water directly to bodies of water without any filtration.
- ↑ What tool is called which can be confusing, and the spatula is no exception. Three kitchen tools all share the name "spatula" — turners, scrapers, and icing spatulas. Turners are used for flipping, rotating, or moving food while they're sizzling on a hot surface. They may have slots or holes in them to allow the grease to drip out. Scrapers are used for, well, scraping bowls and plates, usually to move sticky batter or dough around. They often have a plastic or wooden handle, and the scraping surface is made out of rubber or more plastic. Wooden scrapers also exist, primarily used inside skillets. Icing spatulas are used specifically for icing cakes, although they can also be used to level out dry measuring cups. They have long, thin blades (that are not sharp) used to create the smooth, beautiful icing surfaces on cakes. These are all commonly called spatulas, hence the confusion.
- ↑ Popcorn ceiling is not appetizing, and it looks more like porridge than popcorn, to be honest. Popcorn ceiling has an interesting texture and is commonly used in North American residences for its ability to hide imperfections. It also provides something for bored children and elders lying sleeplessly in bed to look at. Oh, and older ceilings have asbestos in them! Still comfortable sleeping under one now?
- ↑ This is a reference to "Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand", a miracle performed by Jesus. It is detailed in Matthew 14:13-21.
- ↑ The "It's only a five minute walk [...] But it's only a one minute drive" was part of a script for a video I (ahem, we, as it was a group project) made for a school project that tried to promote walking to school. In said video, I was portrayed (with my acting skills) as a crappy teenaged gangster-wannabe who refused to walk the five minutes to school, citing the fact that it took only one minute to drive there.
- ↑ Blue cheese is known for its odor. It is caused by the bacterium Brevibacterium linens, which is also responsible for many foot and body odors as well. Talk about appetizing feet!
- ↑ 1 John 4:8 (NIV)
- ↑ Genesis 2:24 (NIV)