Chapter 4.2 – Project

Hope celebrates the end of another perfect day at school with a few minutes on the playground.
She is easily the most popular kid in school. Her overt friendliness has earned the approval of most everybody, even the older kids. It is her perpetually good mood that makes her such a magnet for friends. Even when she gets in trouble because of her talking, she accepts her consequences graciously and apologizes where necessary; never once holding a grudge. Just about every sim on campus can count her among their friends; with one intriguing exception.
Michael Nava, a new kid at school, started a few days ago and immediately caught Hope’s fancy. Some of the other kids enjoy joking about his choice of attire, specifically the knit cap he wears. Michael has kept mostly to himself until Hope decided to join him for lunch. This comes as a disappointment to the other kids, who are sure to lose a new favorite target for their jeers. Everybody knows, that as soon as Hope Barimen takes someone under her wing, they become instantly popular.
It seems kind of an odd combination, though. Where Hope is outgoing, popular, friendly, and eminently social; Michael is stoic, unapproachable, and seemingly too quiet. Hope’s uncanny abilty to make friends overcomes his aloofness, however. She becomes the first sim in Sunset Valley that he does more than just simply tolerate. Hope enjoys the challenge of having to work to win his friendship over. Not to fault any of her other friends for being less difficult, but Michael soon finds his way into becoming her new pet project.
Michael’s personality slowly begins to thaw as they spend more time together, usually during recess or at the park after school. Over the next couple of weeks, Hope can see there is something troubling him. He has never once invited her over to his house, and he has declined any similar invitations. This, in particular, has been bothering her. She doesn’t know who his parents are, or if he has any siblings. And where there are potentially new sims to meet, Hope Barimen is not one to be held at bay.
So Hope hatches a plan. There are certain benefits that come along with being the school sweetheart among the teachers and staff.  So, finding out where Michael lives turns into a simple task. His home is far off, on the outskirts of town. It doesn’t even have a paved road leading to it. Hope wonders how anybody in the house gets to (and from) work or school. Do they walk? Hope sets off early Saturday morning to visit Michael and meet his family, determined not to let a little legwork get in her way.
She cannot help but feel some disappointment upon reaching Michael’s home. It is a desperate little structure, in dire need of maintenance and repair. There is no neatly manicured lawn; the bushes and weeds have gone unchallenged for months, maybe even years. She swats at buzzing insects as she passes piles of garbage leading to the front steps. This is not what she expected.
She hears angry shouting emerge from the rickety doors and windows while the odor of stale alcohol and rotten food wafts from the place. For the first time in her life, Hope hesitates. The sudden impulse to run away is almost irresistable. But the sound of glass breaking, then Michael’s voice screaming at somebody to stop, keeps her from bolting. Transfixed, she continues cautiously toward the entrance.
She nearly leaps out of her skin when Michael bursts through the door, almost bowling her over. At first, his face was dark crimson with anguish because of whatever happened inside. But his expression shifts painfully to startled and awkward humiliation when he sees her, and realizes who she is. Not knowing how to react, Hope tries to assimilate the flood of emotion that surges through her youthful little mind, which had never known anything but happiness. Instinct drives her actions that moment, and she just backs quietly away.
Hope sprints to the main road, ashamed of her persistent curiosity, then furiously pedals home; not once looking back.

8 thoughts on “Chapter 4.2 – Project

  1. Awesome. I feel bad for Michael. Can’t wait to get more background info on him!

    By the way, where do you get your hairstyles from? They’re great!


      1. You’re welcome! You certainly deserve as much as you can get – you have four kids AND just a great gift for writing. I don’t see how you find the time to write such quality work, but I’m glad that you do!

        By the way, do you have any problems with bugs or anything from these sites?



  2. You write this age so well. Happy little Hope discovering unhappiness for the first time – learning that there are people out there who are not from similar situations as her, you wrote it brilliantly. Her reaction, the instincts taking over and fleeing the scene is exactly what a child her age would have done.

    So I wonder how Michael and Hope’s friendship will change. Will this make it disintegrate or strengthen?

    I know what you mean about real life stuff not leaving a lot of time for the writing. I have to juggle my insane job – but you have four kids. That’s got to be crazy. So, take all the time you need, I’ll wait patiently. Your writing is so amazing that I can wait patiently for the next update.



  3. Wow. Poor Hope’s bubble of happiness has finally been penetrated by situations of the real world. I wonder how this is going to affect her friendship with Michael and more importantly, her development.

    Excellent chapter, as always. I cannot wait to read more!


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