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Warning: Sexual references and magical drug use


eyes closed


He wasn’t wearing his glasses. Funny how that was the first thing Bella noticed here and the first thing she’d noticed at his wake.


He looked old without anything to steal attention from the lines around his eyes. She’d never thought of him that way in life; he’d always seemed as forever young as the rest of his family.


In his youth he’d been considered “too” pretty, but the baby face had aged well on him into middle age and beyond. He'd come from a background even more stifling than Bella's own, with a father that respected art as much as hers appreciated magic.




He was a completely different species of man than Bella’s father, brother, husband or pretty much any of the male population of Sunset Valley. That men like him truly existed was a discovery made too late.



Much like the discovery that, as hard as it was to take care of one baby in the house, she had also married one.


Before, the excitement of sneaking out of her father's house for forbidden graveyard trysts had been enough to quench Bella's thirst for romance. Ironically, it was removing the obstacles between their love that left Bella with romantic wants unfulfilled.


Mortimer was the only man for her, but back then he'd still been a boy. A boy who's parents had bought his way into "giftedness" with smart milk and expensive telescopes when Bella was forbidden to use the gifts she'd been born with, who'd wanted for nothing when she'd been shamed for wanting the wrong things.


None of which was really his fault, but none of which he even understood.




Could you really blame a vulnerable 18-year-old mother with daddy issues for falling for the charms of a mature older man who could paint, play the guitar while protesting injustice, and volunteer to change diapers?


Fate had put her in a position to be easily taken advantage of.


But she wasn’t a teenage girl anymore.

match shot

“Thank you, Bella. I know this is the kind of magic you prefer to stay away from, but I also know you’ve broken that rule before.” Half his charm was in his accent, just the right balance of playfulness and formality, able to make any sentence sound like a flirt.

“Why would you come to me of all people?”

“I’ve only been able to haunt the few from my last living memory, and you’re the only one in any position to help me.”

“What do you want?”


“I think I’ve been murdered.”

“You’re not sure?” It wasn’t so hard to keep your outer cool when your insides had turned to ice.

“You saw me there that night; I was nowhere near the brink of death. Even the Reaper was surprised to see me.”

“I just assumed it was a magical substance overdose that the human autopsy couldn’t pick up.”


He raised a bushy eyebrow. “What kind of magical substances do you think I was on?”

“You were on something. A man your age doesn’t ‘carry on’ the way you did without a little ‘help’.”

“All right. You got me.” He licked his lips. “This past year, I started taking this potion from a gal in Magictown. For Jen, so that I could keep up with her as I got older.”


“A love potion?”


Jon gave her a look that said he found that accusation more offensive than she did. “Bella, you know me better than to even have to ask that.” He narrowed his eyes at her and shook his head. “It only affects the mind and body of the person who drinks it; there’s no magical effect on anyone else whatsoever.”


“It made me feel young again. More alive.” He shrugged. “Some women found the ensuing confidence boost sexy, but there was nothing supernaturally coercive about it.”

“I didn’t notice any difference, so I suppose I can believe you,” she said, willing the blush away from her cheeks. “I need you to tell me where this potion is so that I can test it in the laboratory.”

He chuckled. “Need to spice things up between you and Mortimer?”

“You know what I mean!”

“Joking aside, it’s all natural stuff. Nothing dangerous.”

“Was this ‘gal in Magictown’ a licensed apothecary?”

“She had a pointy hat.”


Bella slapped a hand to her forehead. “Oh for goodness sake. No wonder you’re dead!”

“That’s not why I’m dead. The potion worked fine.”

“A little too fine. Did it ever cross your mind that a magical potion made in some back-alley witch’s basement might have side effects? Like increased fertility?

“I take it you’ve heard about about Loren.”

“Your lovechild?” She regretted her tone as soon as the words were out of her mouth.


“My son,” he hissed. It was enough to make Bella shudder, but he didn’t draw out his anger past those two words. “His mother was a friend, but we weren’t exactly in love.”

“I’m sorry - ”

“I know,” he said gently. “Have you seen my boy? How is he?”


“You haven’t seen him?” Something dawned on her. “Not even at your funeral? With his mother and your other... friends?”

Bella Jon

“Just darkness and a few hints of sound. His cry, Jen’s song… like I said, I can’t haunt them like I can with you. This is my world, Bella. There’s a veil between myself and the living.”

“So you-” Bella phrased her words meticulously. “You haven’t seen any of your children since you died?”


“I’ve tried.” His voice was weak. “I know my girls will be all right; they don’t need me anymore. I know they’ll be there for their brother and his mother along with the rest of the family. I just wish I’d...” He couldn’t finish.

“Jon, you were a better father to that baby in the time you had than mine's been in thirty years.” She knelt down beside him where he'd sank to the ground. “I don’t think I’m the right person to get you up-to-date on everything that's been going on, but I can assure that your son is… not alone.”

“There’s nothing more important to me than family. Nothing. That’s why I need your help with this. To protect my loved ones.”


"Jon..." There was no use putting off the question any longer. “Was it my elixir that did this to you?”

“I think so.” He looked up, his face stoney. “But I don’t blame you, sweetheart. Not for this.”

“But nobody knows about the elixir except the two of us.” It wasn’t the right time to mention if she went to the Magictown authorities they’d find out she used an illegal cowplant to make an illegal elixir, leading to her arrest, public shame as a dark sorceress, and the world using her as proof that even ‘good’ witches had dark secrets. “And your wife.”

“No.” He said it so simply, as if she'd she'd just asked him if he wanted a tuna sandwich.

“There has been ‘talk’ about you two.” She quickly added, “Not that I believe it! But you can see how if word of this gets out, this whole situation will look very bad for all of us? I mean, she didn’t even cry at your funeral.”


“She can’t cry. Fairy tears are made of magic.”

“All I’m saying is that there are more than a few who suspect her of getting fed up with your excessive behavior.”

He scoffed. “What are you even talking about?”

“You slept with everything that moves!”

He grinned at the perfect setup and she already knew what he was going to say.


 “Well, except you, darling.”



"And thank goodness for that," she choked.


"I don't want to hold that over your head, because I know you're still embarrassed, but I wish you wouldn't wouldn't resent me for seeing you in that moment of weakness. It feels like you're trying to project your own shame onto me, rather than finding a way to forgive yourself."

Bella looked at him, eyes wide and lips pursed, and said nothing.

“Look, I know it’s hard for you to understand, but jealousy was never an issue between Jennicor and I. I never broke any vows; it was her idea to love as freely as we did. The worst spat we ever had was just this past year when she drank that stuff you made.”

“Because it made her older.”

“She’s just as gorgeous with silver hair as she ever was. It was the backyard death ritual that disturbed me. 'Would have been nice if you two had at least given me a heads up on that.”


“We don’t have to ask your permission for anything.”

“No, but a warning would have been considerate.” He grimaced. “And then I would have been able to tell you that there was someone else here that night. In this room. And I know for a fact that they saw you make that elixir.”

“My goodness! Why didn’t you tell me that before?”

“I’m not eager to implicate anyone for murder. Particularly not someone I'd have considered myself close to.”




“Kvornan?” Bella asked.

“No! It’s no one in my family. I’ve been reluctant to tell you because I don’t want you to jump to conclusions.”


“What other conclusions could there be? This MURDERER obviously stole some of the elixir and poisoned you!”



“She might not have been acting of her own free will. She’s got a... dark past. Of the supernatural sort.”


“So it’s a she, then?”

He sighed. “I wanted to help her. Save her, even. I probably just made things worse. Her demons may in fact be literal.”



"So you were done in by one of your 'friends'. Shocking."


He shook his head. “Before you act on this I need you to consult Jennicor as a voice of rationality.”

“She’s running around naked with a crossbow.”

“Bella, please, just listen. Do you remember the last conversation we had? And who else was there?”

“Yes, you were - Ohh my goodness, the bartender! Did you get her pregnant too?”


“You really think I’m that irresponsible?”


"Er...so it was the bartender then?”


“No, Bella, it’s not --”







“Hey, Bella, can I talk to you for a second?”



( 39 comments — Leave a comment )
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Apr. 19th, 2014 12:12 pm (UTC)
Sorry, I have a lot of questions!
I love how much Gvaudoin reminds me of Wednesday Addams in the picture of her as a child, so funny. I'm assuming its Fricorith in the stroller?
Poor Bella, I can't imagine it was easy for a romance sim to get married so young, even if her and Mortimer are soulmates. Why do you think Eaxis made her a romance sim, just wondering? Are they living in the same house from the party, just pre-makeover? It looks so different! Is it Earl E Demise that Olive has brought with her to Christmas, talking to Mike and Morty?
I loved the scene of Jon taking the love potion, so trippy and so many little details to look for! Is Loren the only lovechild Jon knows about?
Is Rainelle possessed by 'Bailey'? Those different coloured eyes are so creepy!!
Great chapter Skell, sorry for all my questions!
Apr. 19th, 2014 05:02 pm (UTC)
Re: Sorry, I have a lot of questions!
These are all good questions! That's Gvaudoin and Fricorith, and I did try to make her look like Wednesday.

It's the same house, I just decorated it closer to how it was in TS1 and used a lot of tacky basegame stuff, to make it look sim "retro". That's Rigger Mortis with Olive at the party.

Loren is the only extramarital child Jon knows about, and Bella does not have the guts to tell him about the other ones.

Possession is a very good theory...

Thank you so much for commenting!

Edited at 2014-04-19 05:03 pm (UTC)
Apr. 19th, 2014 06:35 pm (UTC)
This episode is espectacular!!!
Apr. 19th, 2014 09:08 pm (UTC)
Thank you, Zeus!! :D
Apr. 19th, 2014 07:18 pm (UTC)
Really, I don't know what to say. Amazing chapter, why ended with so... mysterious scene? We have to waaaait and woooonder... :P

What's between Bella and Mike? I know they're siblings, but... they don't seem to get well together, as well as I always thought.

So, Bella didn't have an affair, did she?
Apr. 19th, 2014 09:08 pm (UTC)
Thank you for commenting! :)

Bella and Mike have sibling rivalry issues (especially because of the way their parents raised them.)

She didn't, but it was because Jon rejected her when she made a pass at him.
Apr. 19th, 2014 07:19 pm (UTC)
I love popping in here reading your stuff. I don't even have to read them in the right order, I just enjoy your storytelling and your way of setting up scenes so much! I love how you portray the female characters, really well done.
Apr. 25th, 2014 05:31 am (UTC)
Female character portrayal is a very important thing to me, so it really makes me happy to hear you say that. :) Thank you!
Apr. 19th, 2014 09:50 pm (UTC)
Unexpected plot twist, mystery, innuendo… This chapter is really interesting and it has intrigued me very much!

Btw, I like Jon's appearance. He looks exactly like I've imagine him when I saw his icon at Tricous' genealogical tree at first time.
Apr. 25th, 2014 05:36 am (UTC)
Thank you! :D

Glad you like his appearance! That hair and those glasses really helped make the character for me.
Apr. 19th, 2014 10:44 pm (UTC)
As soon as I read the “Well, except you, darling.” line I almost screamed with excitement!

It's not often you come across a good plot twist that doesn't involve something tragic or sinister occurring.

So I commend you for your excellent storytelling skills and look forward to the next chapter :)
Apr. 25th, 2014 05:39 am (UTC)
Hee, I was hoping that would be effective! Thank you. :D
Apr. 19th, 2014 10:44 pm (UTC)
Oh wow, the plot thickens... It's great to see that things aren't as simple as they originally seemed regarding Jon's death, and I'm looking forward to finding out more about it.

A great chapter, as always!
Apr. 25th, 2014 05:39 am (UTC)
Thank you! :D
Apr. 20th, 2014 01:39 am (UTC)
Hahaha, Morty's folks bought into "giftedness". I love it, that explains so much. xD

Fantastic update!
Apr. 20th, 2014 06:16 am (UTC)
I simply love the pictures in this chapter, Skell! All that paint splatter is just so...Jon. :P And I have to agree with Jon, Jennicor is gorgeous with silver (grey?) hair too! Hehe.

I have an odd feeling that Rainelle did not intend for Jon to drink the elixir...but perhaps someone else at the party? Guess I won't truly know until you reveal everything.

Also, I love the whole Mortimer is a 'big baby' thing. Because he totally is. Hahaha. XD And Bella's face when he tries to take a cookie! Classic!

I really enjoyed the chapter. Thank you for sharing such a wonderful story with us.
Apr. 25th, 2014 05:42 am (UTC)
Silver is more poetic sounding!

Bella makes the best annoyed faces. I liked having a whole chapter where she could basically do that for every other picture.

Thank you!
(no subject) - himawari_oji - Apr. 26th, 2014 02:02 am (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 20th, 2014 06:31 am (UTC)
Poor Bella, the romance Sim stuck with 2 babies! A Romance Sim's worst nightmare!
I love the backstory you've given the Tricous - I never played them in my game but totally want to now.

PS I have recently started playing the Sims 2 again, mostly because I found and powered through your story.
Apr. 25th, 2014 05:43 am (UTC)
Thank you! Heheh, yeah poor Bella. I'm glad you could sympathize with her plight. :)

Oh wow, I'm glad I could inspire. I hope you're enjoying it!
Apr. 20th, 2014 07:27 am (UTC)
Love your pictures, love your story, love your characters... Amazing job Skell, I've never found another simstory better than yours ;)
Apr. 25th, 2014 05:44 am (UTC)
Thank you so much! :)
Apr. 20th, 2014 12:06 pm (UTC)
Well worth the wait, so intriguing and mysterious. I absolutely cannot wait for the next part to be released.
Apr. 25th, 2014 05:44 am (UTC)
Thank you! Things should start getting more chaotic soon. :D
Apr. 20th, 2014 08:34 pm (UTC)
Darkened Heart
This episode>>>>>>>>>>the life. But only confused me more! I always thought that Bella was the murderer, because of the 'you-had-sex-in-my-closet-and-defiled-my-house' stuff. XD Awesome chapter!
Apr. 25th, 2014 05:46 am (UTC)
Re: Darkened Heart
Thank you! I tried to see if I could trick people with their perceptions about Bella and Jon's characters.
Apr. 22nd, 2014 11:10 pm (UTC)
Been looking forward to this! :D Loved this chapter a lot. The pictures were amazing, Jon's characterization was really endearing, and BOY what a moment to end on. I can't wait for the Bella and Michael confrontation.

Awesome work as always. :)
Apr. 25th, 2014 05:48 am (UTC)
I wanted to flip the perception of Jon around from what he first seemed to be. :D Bella and Michael definitely do have a major confrontation coming up!

Thank you!
(no subject) - inujadesims - May. 12th, 2014 09:12 am (UTC) - Expand
May. 25th, 2014 02:06 am (UTC)
I love the story; the writing and the pictures are all fantastic! The TS1 shoutouts (especially Bonehilda!) are such fun. The writing and fitting today timelines as well as the effort you've put into decorating (pudding face family photos and all) make for the best sims storytelling I have ever seen. Now I just need to mangle my game into the timeline that F&R is set in :p Keep up the amazing work, I can't wait for the next chapter!
May. 27th, 2014 05:27 am (UTC)
Thank you! It always makes my day when people take the time to comment on my chapters.
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( 39 comments — Leave a comment )



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