Chapter 5.9 – Dreams

The dreams have been recurring for weeks.
 
It is in that twilight between sleep and consciousness when she hears her name being called. The voice is so trembling and weak… she is hurt, scared, and in terrible pain. She just repeatedly calls out for Hope, perhaps believing that she will somehow be heard.
 
During the fog of dreamtime, Hope searches for some clue to help her understand what is happening. Although she hears Kacey only in her dreams, she knows there is something wholly real about it. There was a connection the instant they met. It is a kinship that runs as deeply as if they were sisters, yet even more compelling than that. Kacey is in trouble, and she is calling out to Hope for help.
 
Hope wakes in a cold sweat, the same way she has done many times since the night of the tremor; when Faith was just a newborn. She saw unexplainable images in her dreams that night. Lately, those things have become real again while she sleeps. Sometimes they are frightening. Sometimes they are happy. And in one particular dream, she falls madly in love with the most curious man. But they always fade from her consciousness, leaving only a glimmer of memory when she wakes. She tries to remember enough to write down, but it slips from her like smoke through her fingers.
 
It is the dream about him, in particular, that she both dreads and cherishes. She is finally happy with the man of her dreams (in a manner of speaking) when asleep, but upon waking up, she feels as though she has lost the love of her life. It is most cruel. Hope pushes herself out of bed and takes in the view from her top floor suite. Kacey is out there… somewhere.
 
Faith crashes through the door and provides instant comfort to her dream-dazed mother. She is dressed for church and seems anxious about something. Faith makes a snide remark about role reversal, and the teenager having to wake up a sleepy parent. Hope knows it is in good fun, though. Even after cutting her hours way back, she generally works pretty late at night for the dinner scene.
 
Hope smiles as she remembers that Jimmy had decided to come with the family to church this morning. It is a big step for him, having grown up in a faithless family. Hope knows that it is not just a step for Jimmy, but one for his relationship with Faith. No matter how much the both of them scoff at the talk of being “an item”, everybody else knows they are perfectly matched. Jimmy is the quintessential gentleman. He plays off his obvious attraction to Faith with a convincing “big brother” gig, adding a regular drubbing of her at the various video games they play together (just to prove he’s not going easy on her).
 
 —
 
After the Sunday morning service and brunch at the bistro, Hope invites Jimmy to join the family at a quaint fishing spot in the mountains. The angler gene must have skipped Faith for some reason. Her daughter clearly does not gain the same pleasure her mother and grandfather do. Like Grandma Mei, she just enjoys the time spent with family; even if it means having to endure “stinky, scaly, fish guts”. After a long day, just as the sun begins to set, Jimmy makes his way home after an awkward goodbye with Faith. Hope wishes he would just kiss her and get it over with, already. But the two seem perfectly content with the arrangement. Far be it for Hope to judge. As far she knows, it may just be some kind of nerdy courtship thing. In any case, seeing Jimmy and Faith together fills her with pride and joy. Her little girl chose well.
 
Later that evening, at the supper table, Hope curiously notes how her mother becomes very nostalgic and talks more than she maybe ever has. Faith is listening intently, tuned in to every word, as Mei recounts many of the most memorable times in her life. Hope sits, as if enjoying a rare treat, and becomes engaged during the entire telling; from the drowning death of her toddler brother, to the conversation with Jiang Xi about Mark one early morning at the academy, to her first days away from China and pregnancy with Hope.
Long after supper is finished, Mark gathers everybody into the nectar cellar as the housekeeper cleans up from the meal. Hope finds the request a bit odd, but it becomes immediately clear why Mei had been so sentimental during supper. A birthday cake has been placed on one of the small serving tables in the room. Mei smiles at Hope and explains that she did not want a big party, just her family nearby. With a wink toward Mark, she blows out her candles.
Then, as she has done with nearly everything else in her life, Mei Barimen ages gracefully into an elder.
 
Hope smiles at her mother. Mei knows too well that Hope would have thrown her some kind of epic monstrosity of a party had she known ahead of time. It is weird how different she is from her mother. Mei had always portrayed the rock solid foundation of the family; supporting the full weight of responsibility, but rarely getting any of the praise. Though Hope doesn’t suspect it, the endearing hug she receives from each family member is praise enough.
 
Hope finishes her day chatting with Faith about nothing in particular before going off to bed. It is the part of the day she dislikes the most. The room feels lifeless; and the bed, empty. It is the only time she feels alone. As she drifts off again into sleep, she hears the weak plea of Kacey’s voice calling out her name.
 
And sees the face of the man who she knows should be in her bed, in her home, and in her life.
Advertisements

3 thoughts on “Chapter 5.9 – Dreams

  1. FortA says:

    Oooh…so mysterious! Great chapter, Zoxell. This dream is strange, though I’m sure this will change as more details are revealed. I continue wondering (1) if Kacey will reappear in this generation, and (2) what will happen with Mark’s son from his “undercover” days…Maybe he has something to do with the dream? Hmmm…

    Anyway, great job! I just hope I can make it this far in a challenge one day. I switched computer for gaming recently, and it appears the “new” computer (my brother’s – Windows Vista) doesn’t like Sims much. I’m having all kinds of troubles and am at a loss as to what to do for now. I don’t want to lose the Oaks, but I don’t think I can recreate them from scratch. Nor do I want to start over.

    Anyway, you see my dilemma 🙂

    Great job!

    FortA

    Like

    • Thanks! I had a nearly Barimen ending game issue just recently as well. The game would not save at all, just crash to destop. I decided to save the family household into the bin as a precaution after the first crash. It turns out I had to demolish the original Barimen household in order to save the game world. I placed the household from the bin on the lot and was able to continue. It is probably a technical “failure” of the challenge, but this has turned into more of a story than a challenge anyway.
      I’m sorry to hear you’ve got ongoing PC issues with Sims 3. My understanding is that the save file becomes very unstable as the number day/night cycles grows. I play my game on the setting below epic, so there have been quite a few days go by.

      Hang in there!

      Also, as far as Mark’s son in concerned (his name is Khaliq), he is notpart of this current subplot, but he will become relevent “soonish”.

      Like

  2. For a second I was confused with one of the screenshots, I thought that the walls of Hope’s room had disappeared! But then you zoomed out and it was just a really big window.

    And I’m pretty sure I know who Hope’s dreaming about, though I’m curious as to how you plan on actually getting the two of them to meet, as I don’t think Faith has introduced them formally yet.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.