Welcome back to another chapter of Random Branches. In the last chapter, Atton grew up into a child and made his parents wonder about his quirks. Carth and Kreia grew up and neither of them really had anything too terribly off about them…except maybe Kreia’s glares. At the end of the chapter Sinbad bribed the head of public safety to overlook a crime in the planning stages and Mira received a call from Sinbad’s boss threatening her parents and her kids. And now, on with the story.
Sinbad had a bad feeling when he got home that something wasn’t right. He heard cries from inside the house and walked in. He was immediately bombarded by Atton and Carth who dragged him off to the nursery. What he saw there make Sinbad’s heart start racing. He rushed to Mira’s side and realized she had just fainted. He carried her to bed. He got Kreia cleaned and fed and shooed the boys back to bed. He then noticed Mira’s phone on the floor. He picked it up and looked at the most recent call. It made his heart skip a beat. He knew that number. It was his boss’s number.
He ran on the treadmill for a few hours to take out the pent up energy he had. He couldn’t go run off and play hero. He was way too smart to do something that hastily. He’d wait some time. Plus, he wanted to hear exactly what his boss had told Mira. And he wouldn’t know that until she came to. For now, he decided to get some rest. He had work that night and coming in exhausted would not be a way to help matters.
When Mira came to she noticed that she was in bed and her husband was resting next to her. She smiled as she knew he had to have carried her back to bed. Her boys weren’t that strong. She stirred a bit and Sinbad woke up. “You’re awake. You’ve been out since before I got home. I saw who called. What did he say.” Sinbad said, the worry he felt rising with every second.
“He said that if you don’t shape up at work, something might happen to my parents or to one of our kids,” Mira said, tears in her eyes, “What are we going to do, Sinbad?”
“You are going to do nothing,” Sinbad said, taking her hand in his, “I am going to shape up at work. Get promoted above my asshole of a boss and get his ass fired for his work behavior. I’ll show him. He will pay for even thinking of hurting you.” His eyes were filled with a rage Mira had never seen before. She finally knew why people didn’t know what she had that made Sinbad’s cold, evil exterior melt away.
However, Mira and Sinbad kept the reason behind Mira’s fainting spell away from the boys. They didn’t need to know why. However, they were told that Mira had just been overworked and stressed out and it finally caught up to her. The boys seemed to believe that it wasn’t completely a lie. Which is what Mira had said she had wanted to avoid telling them. The two boys were close as two sibling boys could be. They were a bit competitive with each other, but weren’t afraid to ask the other for help. Atton had a harder time with math, while Carth seemed to struggle with the creative parts of English.
While Mira was spared Sinbad’s mean tendencies, their children weren’t. Mira didn’t understand how Sinbad could be so mean to them, but Sinbad shrugged it off and said it was giving them the thick skin they needed to survive in the world. “I still don’t see how patronizing them over every little thing is going to give them a thick skin. Sounds to me like a recipe for low self-esteem.” Mira had countered back. Sinbad had only shaken his head and walked off. His father had done the same to him and he didn’t have low self-esteem. His boys would be just fine.
If one good thing had come out of the threatening call, it was that it was the catalyst needed for Mira to forgive Sinbad for lying to her. She finally accepted that Sinbad hadn’t lied to her maliciously. Not like he does to others in town or to his accomplices. He was just a bit rash and said the first thing he thought of when his crush asked him what he did for a living. She was old enough now to realize that it was just an honest mistake that Sinbad hadn’t known how to get out of at his maturity level. She was also glad that she had found out before the call had happened.
Sinbad sighed as he went to work one night. This was it. The night he had been waiting for. His first actual on the job mission where he got to go inside and help. Before he had done the planning and been the getaway driver. But now, he could show off his true skills. The skills the leader of Bridgeport’s thieves guild had seen and nurtured. Why all the talk in Bridgeport was that Sinbad Rotter would be the one to take the leader down. Because that’s usually how things worked.
Which is another reason why Sinbad moved back to Twinbrook. To lure his mentor into a false sense of security about him. But now, he wasn’t so sure if he wanted to topple Bridgeport. His mentor had been known to harm his rivals’ families to get them to back off. And if Sinbad had one weakness, it was Mira. And all of Twinbrook knew it and it wouldn’t be hard for his mentor to know it, too.
Soon enough, their little princess wasn’t quite so little anymore and she most definitely didn’t want to be called a princess. Sinbad and Mira both recognized pieces of childhood Sinbad in her, personality wise. She was constantly doing generally bad things. She’d fuss over everything to make sure it was perfect and heaven forbid you mess something up. She could downright cruel. Mira and Sinbad had many heart to hearts with Kreia and eventually, the cruel things died off. Kreia’s parents knew Kreia didn’t have many friends due to her personality, but they knew hope wasn’t lost for their little princess.
Atton was still ever the odd child. He would lay in his parents’ bed for a bedtime story just to get up and go sleep in his own bed. Not that Sinbad would really mind it too much and Mira always smiled at Sinbad for doing things to connect with his children. Granted, they didn’t have any children’s books, but I don’t think Atton minded too much. One of his quirks I suppose.
Of course their oldest wasn’t to be young forever and he was soon a teenager. And he still didn’t grow out of his quirks. Sinband and Mira didn’t want to admit it, but maybe something wasn’t right with Atton. But he wasn’t unhappy with his life and he had friends. Whatever was up with Atton didn’t seem to be affecting him too badly. However, he faced Sinbad’s wrath one evening after Sinbad came home to find Atton throwing a party. “How dare you throw a party while your mother and I were visiting her ill mother! Your grandmother!” Sinbad yelled, “We got a call from the Knacks saying that there was an awful commotion happening in our house. You want to know what we thought was happening?”
“Go for it. I bet you just thought we were having a good time,” Atton shrugged, not really getting the severity of the situation.
“Remember when you younger how you and Carth woke to find your mother fainted on the floor?”
“Yea, something about stress catching up to her. Why does her past mental issues have to do with my party?”
“It wasn’t just stress. It was some colleagues of mine threatening to harm you, your siblings, or you grandparents,” Sinbad yelled, “Your mother and I thought they were carrying out that threat. That we were going to come home to find you, Carth, and Kreia dead. You’re grounded for the foreseeable future.” Sinbad then stormed outside leaving Mira speechless. Mira turned to Atton after staring at the door for a few and said, “Not to mention this party was not a good influence on your siblings. Now, you best get to bed and I better not hear one complaint in the morning from you about being tired. And you will be cleaning up this mess.”
Atton didn’t quite go to bed yet. He told his mother he wanted to talk with his father again. “Your funeral,” was all Mira said before she turned in after giving her parents a call to say that everything was fine and that Atton had just thrown a party.
“Dad, I’m really sorry. I don’t always get the consequences of my actions and I know I’m not like everyone else. You know it takes me longer to get things. I’ll clean up the place, I swear. I just don’t want to go to school grounded. It will make things harder on me that it already will be for the lousy party. I’m already a bit of an outcast for who I am, why add grounding to the list of things to make me more of one.” Atton said.
Sinbad looked at his son with tired eyes. “Alright. On one condition,” Sinbad said.
“What’s that?” Atton said.
“Apologize to your mother for giving her a heart attack and cutting short her time with her dying mother. She’s not expected to live much longer and you just cost her time she could have been spending with her mother.” Sinbad said. Of course, a perfect father wouldn’t have said what to apologize for, but Sinbad thought guilt-tripping was fun.
Atton apologized in the morning to his mother for everything and ran off to school, happy to have been ungrounded before the school could know. His classmates could just think that he didn’t get grounded at all. And he bribed his siblings to keep them quiet as Kreia was now school aged.
Atton soon found himself a girlfriend. Of course, his mental condition didn’t make him realize that stealing a girl from someone wasn’t very bright and Sinbad had to explain that to the parents of the girl. The girl’s name was Shellie Knack. One of his first friends. The two even went to prom together and Atton was voted Prom King. It made Sinbad and Mira very pleased that their awkward son had become popular enough to be Prom King. The pair were very cute together and Sinbad and Mira hoped the romance would last forever.
The family soon fell into a rhythm again. Mira and Sinbad’s sleep schedules did slow their reconciliation period, but both knew that they probably would stay together after the kids grew up. Or at least if they did split, it wasn’t because they just sat back and let their marriage fail. But Sinbad’s old boss and been caught by the police and thrown in jail so they thought the threat against the family went back down to a more normal level. Which wasn’t zero considering Sinbad’s profession.
Mira’s job was to teach the kids to drive. Sinbad was way too hot-headed to be able to handle it. Not that Mira was perfect, but she was miles better than Sinbad. Especially when it came to teaching Atton. It served as a way for Atton and Mira to bond, even though cars were not Mira’s preferred way of driving.
Sometimes when they were out driving around Twinbrook, the pair would stop at the local diner for dinner. The atmosphere at the Bistro was too overwhelming for Atton and Atton’s clothing choice sometimes left much to be desired for a formal place. One time though, Mira wished they had just braved the Bistro as when coming out of the place, they witnessed the death of one of the elder citizens. It made Atton not want to drive home and Mira had to explain to Atton how it was the man’s time and that it wasn’t something to be overly sad about.
Their supposedly easy child was soon a teenager as well and soon they were getting word from his school that he was skipping. This of course caused his grades to tank and soon Mira was lecturing Carth about his behavior. Atton eventually got through to Carth by telling him that he’ll have time to be childish when he’s grown up and told Carth to get a loud alarm clock so that Mira didn’t have to wake him up every morning by dumping ice cold water on him. Something about getting alarm loud enough to wake the dead was how Atton put it. Maybe it was the not quite right sibling noticing it, but soon there was a very loud alarm in the room and Carth tried to contain his childish tendencies.
Sinbad would occasionally cook something special for Mira before heading off to work. It was his small tokens of I’m sorry for working when you’re sleeping and sleeping when your up. But that was Sinbad’s job: chef of the family. He’d make breakfast before crashing after work and fix dinner before going to work. He didn’t really mind it. It was definitely relaxing and took one stress off of Mira.
And that’s it for this chapter. Will Atton continue to succeed or will his quirks start to get to him? Will Carth stop acting out? And what is up with the silent Kreia? Find out in chapters to come.
Progress towards objectives:
- Grow a garden with every plant from the store (Think about a broken record and you know where this stands XD)
- Master gardening skill (Still at level 5. Two plants and little other studying make for slow skilling XD)
- Get married (Accomplished Chapter 1.0 when Mira married Sinbad)
- No woohoo until married (Accomplished Chapter 1.0 as Mira never woohooed before marrying Sinbad)
- Have a boy and a girl (Accomplished Chapter 1.1 as they have 2 boys and 1 girl as of that chapter)
Progress towards LTW’s:
- Mira- Illustrious Author: Writing level 5, Painting level 2
- Sinbad- Master Thief: Safe Cracker (Level 6, finally on the thief branch)
Author’s Note: I hate the groups feature. It loves to glitch out on me. Sinbad and Mira had gotten a 2 day free vacation (which I thought I would be able to play or I probably wouldn’t have accepted it). Atton wanted to throw a teen party, but was having horrible luck getting his crush to stay at the house long enough to do anything because she storming off because the group stunk. So I obliged Atton and well, it brought Mira and Sinbad home early and well, you saw what happened with that in the story.
I was also SHOCKED that my mean-spirited, evil, hot-headed Sim just let Atton off the hook that quickly. If I had known that I would have let Atton stay grounded for a bit before having him try to get let off the hook.