Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Chapter Eighteen - Scars

"What is it mom?"



 "Hey, isn't this place the greatest? I love this town! The crystal blue waters, so beautiful!"

 "Look at this mom! This is, like, the biggest fish ever!!! Take a picture!... no, with the camera you're holding!" 

"I don't know, Keera. With the filming right now, it's a bit of a closed set. Maybe later this year I can give you a tour of the studio, okay?"

"Okay! I can't believe I am actually going to tour a movie studio!"

 "Oh look at me, I'm Tom! Look at my lovely hat! I love this hat! You know how much I love my hat! SOOOO much, like, I want to marry this hat!"

 "Shouldn't you be getting ready for the tour tomorrow?"

"Yeah, but this is so much fun playing this game with you. I never get a chance to!"


"I love you mom. I'll see you after the tour."


 "If you are just joining us we have a confirmed explosion at the Plumbob Pictures back-lot. No deaths to speak of but one person has been injured. Um, Bob, do you have a name there?"

"Um.. yeah, a Keera Kethrin, a resident here in Hidden Springs. From what we were told she was burned by shrapnel... according to this, she's being taken to the Hidden Springs General Hospital right now."

 "Mom? I can't feel my face... please help."

 Annabelle woke up from a nightmare, a blank expression on her face. This was common for her, and many others since Keera's accident. The nights have been sleepless and the days have been dreary, and the family members in the household knew that sooner or later someone was going to crack. Knowing that someone else was probably awake for a similar reason to her own, Annabelle stood up and got dressed, walking out her door and down the hall to a door with a frosted window.

"Dear Commissioner Cambridge. Recently, a member of my family was injured in an explosion at the film studio here in the town of Hidden Springs, Washington. If you would remember Keera, the one who helped me figure out the Robertson case and other disappearances a couple years ago. I recently photographed the evidence from the explosion, and am sending these photographs to you via E-mail. I was wondering if you could take the time to go over this evidence, hopefully you will be able to determine if it was an accident or foul play at work."

"Your friend, Kelly Jane Coen".   

 "Now all I gotta do is get the reply e-mail when he sends it. If anyone can figure out if the explosion that injured Keera was an accident or not, it's him." Kelly said.
 "Thank you for doing that, Kelly. I've tangled with some people in the past, and those people would do anything to harm me and my friends... I just got to make sure it wasn't them."

 "Well if that's the case then that means they knew Keera would be at the studio, and if that's the case then they know about our plans and schedules. And if THAT'S the case then I would be worried." 
"I know I'm worried." Annabelle said.

"But all the evidence I've collected said that's not the case. It was just an accident, a common one on movie studios where effect machines and barrels full of gunpowder are in places that would only result in disaster. At least that's my hunch. Look, I'll just wait for the e-mail back, okay?"

"Okay. Thanks for caring, Kelly." Annabelle said, and walked out of the room.

"Uh... no problem... Annie. No problem at all. If you need me for ANYTHING, just stop by, okay? Anything..." Kelly then realized that she was talking to no one, as Annie was already gone."Anything." Then she went back to her computer where she constantly read the name of the other person responsible for Keera's DNA, after weeks of searching...

...Kelly Jane Coen. Her own name.

Outside Kelly's door, Annabelle stopped and saw Keera lying on the couch, still in her hospital gown from when she came home the day before.

"Hi Mom.", she said, awakening.


Meanwhile, in a different room of the house, John and Scarlett were soundly asleep. Well, at least John was for the time being.

Scarlett, in the meantime, was unable to sleep at all, no matter what she did. It was Scarlett that told Keera to meet her at the film studio, and it was her that told Keera to wait for a few seconds while she went to get her purse from her car.

Fifteen seconds was all it took. When she approached the car, she heard a massive explosion, then a second, smaller one, then a blood-curdling scream that resonated through the entirety of Hidden Springs.

Keera's scream.

Scarlett knew that her friend was hurt, but she was frozen in place. The sight of the fire terrified her and she didn't know why. Or maybe she did, and that was the reason she was so scared.

"No, no it's not fair."

"Everything okay, Red?" John asked her. "Do you need something?"

"A time machine, maybe." Scarlett said, angrily. "So I can go back and slap myself in the face for not bringing Keera to the car with me. I messed up, John. I messed up so bad, that I don't think I will ever live this down. I feel so... terrible!"

Scarlett stood up and walked over to her computer desk, sitting down at it. John, now wide awake, stood to his feet and walked over next to her.

"Do you want to talk about it? I can spare any time you need." John said, worried about his girlfriend.

"No. Just let me sit here and be mad at myself."

"Scarlett don't say that." John said.

"Why not? It's not fair, John. I never spent time with Keera before, I was always too busy, and then when I finally do, she gets horribly injured! It's not fair! NOT FAIR!!!"

Then she angrily looked up at John."What, was it fair for me to finally spend time with your niece only to be responsible for her injury?"

"You weren't respons-"

"YES I WAS!" Scarlett yelled out. "I told her to wait, I was going to be back. Fifteen seconds later and my decision to leave her cost her half her face! I was responsible, John. I was stupid, and only thinking about MYSELF! Now I can't begin to imagine what Keera thinks of me."

"You haven't asked her? You haven't even talked to her yet?"

"No. I can't confront her, not after what I did. Grrr! I just want to throw a rock through a window right now!"

Suddenly, John came up with an idea to try and calm her down. He'd seen her angry before, in fact her "take-no-prisoners", attitude was one of the reasons he loved her so much, but this was different. She was angry at herself, and he needed to say something to calm her down to prevent her from getting herself into real trouble.

"Look Red, the Science Facility is a strange place to work, and as such they gave us a name and number to call a therapist to get a handle on ourselves if things get too off-kilter for us. Her name is Julia Richards. Keera already made an appointment with her, at eleven AM tomorrow, but you might be able to get in earlier, because this is a serious problem that you need to talk out."

With a slightly angered tone in her voice, Scarlett stood up and said "I will talk to her if it will make you feel better."

"It will." John said, "And I hope she will help."

Scarlett then did something, something that shocked John because she'd hadn't done it since the accident... she smiled. "Okay. For you, and for me, I will see Dr. Richards."
"I just don't know how to go through the day anymore." Keera said. "Things for me have been so terrible. This just feels like a nightmare, a nightmare that I can't wake up from. They did something at the hospital, I can't even feel pain from this... this scar... this burn. They numbed it, but it still hurts, inside me."

"Please wake me up, Mom. Please wake me from this... terror. I can't take this... I'm so... disfigured. I don't even have an eye anymore, just some glass sphere they put where my eye should be. They said they can clone me a new one but who knows how long that will be. Until then I will have to wear this stupid eye patch! I don't want to show my glass eye to people."

"Keera... you shouldn't have to worry about what people will say. If I knew how to show everyone my true green self I would, just to make you feel better."

"But this IS my true self! Look at me! Look at this scar! Everywhere I go people will stare at it! That's why I'm never leaving this house! NEVER! The therapist can come HERE, to US."

"Keera, things don't work that way. I'm so sorry for what happened to you, I really am. If I could have that scar in your place, I would. But listen to me, I am telling you that you don't need to worry about what people think! Only what you think. I hope you think you're beautiful because I think that too! And so does John, and Kelly, and Scarlett. Tom will think that way as well, when he gets back. To us, nothing's changed. You will always be a fighter, and a good-hearted person."

"I don't know what to say." Keera said. "I just don't." With that, she walked away without saying anything else. 
Later on, Annabelle was walking out of her own bedroom, after a failed attempt to get some sleep via a nap. When she did so, she saw Scarlett, who was standing outside her door.

"I've not talked to Keera yet. I know she hates me for leaving her at the film studio."

"She doesn't." Annabelle said. "And she doesn't know what to feel right now. Everything is so different for her. But trust me, she cares for you, just like you care for her. It's a mutual feeling."

"Well to show her I care... I have to do something for her. Annabelle, I have an idea."
Later that morning Annabelle was stepping outside the house to get the paper when she saw someone standing on the far side of the yard. She had heard a car pull up and assumed that Keera didn't want to see the therapist, but was stunned to see Tom there, ready to walk into the house.
Annabelle ran up to Tom and hugged him, happy to see that he got home safe and when she asked him to. "Thanks for coming home, Tom. I am sorry your trip was cut short."

"No problem." Tom said. "I need to tell you about something that happened on the trip, but that can wait. Where is Keera?"

"She went with Kelly and Scarlett to a therapist. She was hurt, Tom. Half her face was burned in an explosion, and she lost an eye. She... is different. She doesn't seem like the same Keera anymore, and I am afraid she will never come back to being the way she was... she was so happy..."
"I'm afraid the Keera we knew died in the explosion, Tom."

"It's so... dark in here." Scarlett said. "Is it always like this at this time of the morning?"

"The sun hasn't risen over the mountain yet. And yes it's usually like this at this time. Luckily I have my trusty lamp!"

"So John said it was urgent that you meet with me, that you are angry at yourself and don't know why." Julia Richards, the town therapist, said.

"I know why." Scarlett replied. "Because I nearly killed my boyfriend's niece. I was responsible for her being injured."

"Is that what you think."

"That's what I know!" Scarlett angrily said. "Look, I was responsible for her safety at the studio while I was giving her a tour! She got injured because I left. So... it's my fault."

"Okay, but what if she wasn't injured at the studio. Would it be your fault if she had fallen off a roof, or got caught in an explosion at her home?"

"I don't think so... Why?"
"Because that's what could have happened to her at any time. It was just a coincidence that it happened to you on that day at that time. I am not saying it wasn't your fault, and I'm not saying it was, I'm just saying that you couldn't control what happened to her there at the studio just as you couldn't have controlled what would have happened at home."

"I... suppose."

"Besides, this anger issue at yourself hasn't always been directed only at you, has it?"

"What makes you think that?"

"I'm a therapist, Scarlett." Julia said. "I know a lot about people."

"Yes, It's true. I get angry, a lot, and usually because someone insults the color red. That's mostly because of my parents. I have a few memories of them, one of which was the fact that they were brought together by their love of art, and particularly the color red. They loved it so much, they named me Scarlett and gave me red toys, red clothes, and as you can tell I love the color myself.

"In fact, one could say I'm obsessed with it! Someone made a snide comment about me wearing too much red one day, and in a fit of rage I broke his hand. I don't even know why I really did it! I guess my rage goes back to my childhood. You see, Miss Richards, I never actually knew my parents. I never knew Michael and Kathy Keene. I was just a toddler when they died."
 "As I said before, I have fragmented memories of them, from when I was so damn young. My first memory was walking. I felt like a pro, being able to take my first steps.

"But with all the good memories I have, there are some that are terrible. My last memory of my dad was him running, screaming, into a burning house to save my mother. They both died that night, and apparently we couldn't even bury them... there was nothing left to bury."

 "What the hell kind of memory is that? Not to mention that I spent my life, my entire life, knowing that my parents died for nothing, and they gained nothing. Their surviving art collected dust in a museum attic for YEARS, and they got no respect or notoriety. No respect for the dead! Their names were never said by anyone in Sunset Valley again, and quite frankly, that pissed me off!!!"

"So that's why."
"That's why what... oh..."

"Your anger issue stems from the lack of respect your parents' death was given by the people of the town, among other things. And since they loved dressing you in the color red so much, and told you so, you get angry every time someone so much as insults the color."

"I don't believe it... you're right. That's why I get so angry when someone attacks my favorite color... I'm just honoring my parents' memory in my own special way! Hell, maybe next time we can discuss other reasons why I get so mad."

"How long would that take?" Julia asked.

"Umm...." Scarlett couldn't finish her sentence, then said "Fifty more sessions? I have a lot of rage."

"Wow... I can tell. So fifty more sessions it is. I will make weekly appointments with you, Scarlett." Julia said. "And I hope to see you at them!"

"From today, I assure I will." Scarlett stood up. "Thank you, Dr. Richards. You are a good listener. But could I ask you a question? It's about Keera..."

"I don't like it." Keera said to Kelly while waiting outside the office building for Scarlett to be done with her session. "I don't like being out here, for the world to see my scar."

Keera then angrily said "I feel so... alone right now. I feel no one understands what I'm going through... Look, it's 10:50, Scarlett must be done now, and I got to go inside. I will talk to you later, Kelly."

With no more words, Keera walked into the office building. Kelly waited until she was inside, then pulled her cell phone out and called Annabelle.
"She's inside. Let's do Scarlett's idea, okay? Meet me down here at the office."

Keera sat inside Julia Richards' office. By now the sun had risen over the town's signature mountain, allowing more light into the room. 

"I don't know what there is to say. I was caught in an explosion, and it nearly killed me. Burned half my face. What else is there to it?"

"I am sorry for what happened to you. But, from what I understand, that's not the first time you faced the end and came out strong, was it?"

"You're right. My mother must have told you. Back when I was twelve years old, I fell into a pool and nearly drowned. I've never been in the water since. I know, I should be more thankful after having two near-death experiences, but I didn't have scars from the pool, I didn't lose an eye!"

"Well maybe that's not true. The scars part I mean." Julia said. "You don't want to get in the water anymore, well that's a sign of a mental scar, one that has kept with you your entire life since you nearly drowned."

"What do you mean, Dr. Richards?" Keera asked.

"Well there are really two types of scars. Physical, like the one you have on your face, from the burn mark, and emotional, like the one that emerges every time you go near the pool."

"Yeah, and the physical one is the one I hate more. I hate being..." Keera looked into a mirror sitting next to Julia, "I hate being this way. I feel so alone in my life."

"That's not my point, Keera. I brought up the idea of emotional scars because everyone in the world has to deal with them. I deal with people all the time who tell me that they are afraid, they are afraid because they feel they are alone in the world. You're not alone, Keera. You will never be alone."

"I wish I could believe you, Dr. Richards. I really do. But it doesn't seem like you know that's true. I don't think that's true. No one I know will ever know what it's like to be me, how I am right now."

"Okay." Julia said, exasperated. "I suppose you're right. Hey, this session's over, time's up. Let's go down to the lobby and meet your family."

"Whatever you say." Keera said.

"I'm sorry for wasting your time, Dr. Richards." Keera said as they walked out of the building. "I just don't think I- what the?!"

Keera couldn't believe what she was seeing. Standing in front of her, in the parking area of the office building, all of the people in her family were standing in a line...

And all of them were wearing an eye patch, in support of Keera. Tom was there...

...Kelly was there....

John was there too, with a special eye-patch that allowed him to still wear glasses with it.

"See, Keera. We're all here, and we will wear these as long as it takes for you to know that we care about you." Annabelle said.

Scarlett was also there, smiling. She was the one who had the idea, and orchestrated it with Julia before leaving, just in case Keera needed them.

"See? No matter what, you will never be alone. What I meant was... you will always have a family that will be there for you, Keera."

"Yeah, you're right." Keera said, smiling.

"Let's go home."


 Later that evening, in the darkness of the night, a mysterious man crept across the front parking lot of the town's Science Facility. He looked around inside through the front windows: no cops were in the building, presumably because most of them were sifting through the aftermath of the explosion that occurred not too long before at the movie studio. 
The mysterious man moved through the Science Facility, utilizing all manners of avoiding being spotted by the building's security cameras and men. Finally, he made his way to the center of the facility, where his target was waiting for him.

 After making sure the room was secure, the thief used a device to break into it and eyed the potion sitting on the counter, like it was just waiting for him.

"Finally." The man said. Then he put the potion into a strange satchel that seemed to appear and vanish at his will. Upon taking the potion, however, the building's alarms rang out, and the man could sense that half the building's security officers were running towards him. 

However... he was long gone before they even got there.


  1. Need... another chapter... now! :D

  2. that was amazing beyond belief. I love the 'videos' of Keera at the beginning. A beautiful chapter. I swear this has to be the best story ever created with sims. Keep it up, don't let writers' block get to you. this is worth the wait.

  3. amazing i love tom and annabelle u made a great job Nick

  4. I almost cried when they were standing outside, all with patches on.

  5. I love john's SPECIAL eye pach...

  6. Haha. I love the part where Keera is in the videos. Especially the one of her pretty much making fun of Tom's hat. XDD
    I love this story sooo much


    First of all, THAT explains why Keera's theme is blue even though Annie's is purple! She's not a complete clone, she's also half of Kelly! Omg that's a crazy twist, I want to see where that goes! On a side note about the whole "daughter" thing, I wonder how Annie explained that to everyone in town. Keera showed up when Annie was still a teenager, Annie's never had a boyfriend and there was no period of time where she was pregnant. I'm curious about what story she told. The typical "I had a one-night fling with a boy, got pregnant too young and hid the pregnancy until the baby was born" story would work except for the fact that Keera basically popped out of the ground a ten year old child. (I think about weird background stuff like this in stories ALL the time).

    Secondly, I love the darker, more serious turn the story has taken with Keera's disfigurement. It's kind of like going from watching a Superman movie to watching a Batman movie. I wonder if this is a sign of even heavier things to come!

    Thirdly... omg how cute are Scarlett and John?!?! Like... be still my heart! I actually squealed out loud when the story cut to them sleeping in bed together (and was amused by her animal print bra, which I took as a not-so-subtle hint that there had been some WooHoo going on with them earlier. ;) Spicy)! Besides that, they're just so freaking adorable all around in general, THIS SHIP HAS SAILED! I love when my ships become canon! (Now we just gotta nudge Tomabelle together, heheh).

    And AWWWWW the eyepatches! So cute and so sweet and I just love this family and I just love this story and I just love everything, it just slays me, my feelings are all over the place and I'm just going to stop rambling now but I had SO MANY FEELINGS I needed to talk about, goddamn.