Tuesday, June 11, 2013
Chapter 5: Hello, Goodbye
The suffocating silence bears down on Delilah with brutal intensity, crushing her under the weight of their unspoken words, and the oppressive summer heat coats her skin in a fine layer of nervous sweat. Taking a deep, shaky breath, Lila forces herself not to cry, but Beau’s piercing gaze feels almost knife-like in its severity.
“Why didn’t you tell me?” he asks at last, finally breaking the uneasy tension between them.
Delilah shrugs noncommittally. “I didn’t want to bother you,” she answers in a meek voice.
“Bother me?!” he hisses. “Delilah, we’re not talking about left over laundry here! You’re fucking pregnant! With my fucking child!”
“Our child,” she snaps with a furious glare.
“Exactly! Last I checked, it takes two to make a baby,” he snarls.
Delilah feels her temper start to flare, but the fire in her chest quickly dies out, replaced by a smoldering sense of guilt instead. “Why do you even care?” she asks quietly. “From what I heard, you moved on from me ages ago, dating a new girl every week according to the tabloids. I thought a baby would be the last thing you’d want to deal with right now.”
“Does that honestly sound like me?” he demands with an exasperated sigh. “Yes, I dated around a bit after we broke up, but only because I was looking for someone to fill the void you left in my life. I was heartbroken when you ended it between us, Delilah. I still am,” he adds softly.
Delilah scowls at him, weighing the sincerity of his words. “You don’t need to be tied down to a child, Beau. You have your name to think about, your career in show business, and a baby would only get in the way.” Beau laughs, but Delilah remains unconvinced. “Seriously! Your fans would be livid, and a scandal like this could ruin your squeaky clean reputation!”
“I don’t care,” he smiles. “I’ve always wanted a family, and we could-” He stops short as Delilah cringes slightly. “What’s wrong?” he asks, worry written all over his face.
“The baby kicked. It happens a lot nowadays,” she reassures him.
“Can I feel?” he whispers with wide-eyed excitement.
Delilah grins at his enthusiasm and readily agrees to his request, gently taking his hand and placing it on her belly. “I don’t know if it’ll happen again though,” she warns.
Beau nods in understanding, but within just a few moments the baby starts kicking up a storm. “Does it hurt?” he asks breathlessly.
“Not really,” she replies, giggling at the awestruck expression on his face.
Once the movement stops, Beau reluctantly steps back, his hand brushing against Delilah’s as he pulls it away from her stomach. “I miss you,” he sighs. “And I… I still love you.”
Lila freezes, her heart racing at the hungry look in his eyes. “Beau…” She tries to use a firm tone, but her voice comes out sounding more wistful than cautionary.
“Delilah,” he whispers affectionately, his tongue tasting the delicate sound of her name. Grabbing her hand, Beau brings her fingertips to his lips and softly kisses her smooth skin. “I can give you so much, baby. I can love you and support you and provide for you. We can get married and buy a house and I can relocate to Jericho and you can quit your band and we can raise this child together as a family. What do you say, darling? Let’s try it again, okay?”
Delilah frowns but doesn’t pull her hand away. “Beau,” she begins hesitantly. “I- I can’t. We can’t. I’m not ready for any of that. I don’t-”
“Come on, Delilah,” he murmurs, stepping toward her and wrapping his arm around her waist. “I want to be with you, baby. I love you.”
Delilah feels her breath catch in her chest as Beau pulls her against him and leans in to kiss her. She tries to back away as his lips press against her face, his tongue probing her mouth for acceptance, but he tightens his already firm grasp on her arm.
“Come on,” he implores. “Kiss me.”
And so she does, relaxing into his strong embrace.
Kieran’s voice, heartbroken and disconsolate, rips through her consciousness, and Delilah leaps back out of Beau’s arms. “Kieran!” she shouts as she turns to face him, struggling to come up with a story, an excuse, anything to explain the situation, but he’s already gone.
Three agonizing days pass before Delilah can convince him to see her again, and even now he only relents because he can’t bear to leave without saying goodbye one last time.
“I’m sorry,” she sobs as he snaps closed his final suitcase. “It didn’t mean anything. Kieran, please, you must believe me! I didn’t even want to kiss him!”
Kieran shakes his head, fighting the urge to run over to her and kiss away her tears. “No,” he says, more harshly than intended. “I can’t, Lila. I won’t. I need to get away from you, from this, before it kills me. Atticus offered to help me find a place to stay in Arundel, and I’m going to study at the university for a few years. Please, just do me a favor and leave me alone. I need some time on my own. I need some space away from you.”
“A few years?!” she cries. “But Kieran, I can’t raise this baby without you! I need you! I-”
“You need to think about someone else besides yourself for once,” he retorts angrily. “I’ve got a train to catch. If you have to reach me for some reason, you can write to Atticus and he can find me. Goodbye, Delilah.”
In a numb stupor, Lila makes her way home and collapses into a chair at the kitchen table. Gone. The word washes over her like a cold winter rain, sending chills down her spine as the bitter loneliness seeps into her bones. She desperately tries to hold back another onslaught of tears, but the memory of Kieran’s heartbroken face flashes in front of her and she breaks down into ragged sobs once more.
“Delilah?” Beau tentatively pushes open the slightly ajar door and peaks inside. “I wasn’t going to come up, but you haven’t been returning my calls and I wanted to check on you and make sure everything was o-” He stops suddenly as his eyes come to rest on her damp, tearstained face. “What’s wrong, baby?” he whispers worriedly.
Delilah looks over at him and attempts to smile, but her trembling lips refuse to cooperate.
Pulling up a chair to sit beside her, Beau stares at her anxiously, uncertain of how to handle the situation. After their encounter the other day, he fully expected to have to woo Delilah away from another man, but judging from her tearful and often unintelligible jabber he may not have any competition after all. Either way, Beau knows that he needs to assert his claim now, and he’s not above using her current vulnerable state to his advantage. Still, watching her now, he feels a fleeting sensation of guilt pass through his consciousness, but he quickly shrugs it off. Delilah will be far happier with him than that other guy, he reasons, and by helping her move on from the relationship he’s really doing her a favor and saving her from more heartache.
As her sobs begin to subside, Beau stands up and pulls Delilah in for a hug.
“There, there,” he soothes. “It’s not so bad, darling. You don’t need him anyway.”
“B-But the b-b-baby,” she cries into his shirt. “I c-can’t raise it a-l-lone.”
Beau forces himself to suppress a smile. She’s playing right into his hands, and now all he needs to do is seal the deal. “You won’t be alone,” he assures her smoothly. “I will be with you every step of the way.”
“You w-will?” she breathes.
Slipping his hand beneath her chin, Beau tilts her head up and forces her to meet his steady gaze. “Of course I will,” he murmurs as he wipes a tear off her cheek. Hesitating slightly, he presses on. “Let me move in with you, my darling. At least until the baby is born. I don’t want you living alone right now, especially considering your condition, and I’d feel much better if I could be here to look after you. Besides,” he adds with a small smirk, “I don’t want to miss a single minute of our baby’s life, and this way we can experience every moment together, as a family.”
Delilah falters, her mind turning to Kieran. He was going to move in with her and help take care of the baby, but now he’s gone. And he didn’t even let me explain, she thinks bitterly, her eyes brimming with fresh tears.
“Alright,” she agrees after a pause. “But only until the baby is born.”
After Kieran’s heartbreaking departure, Delilah turns to her music for comfort, throwing herself into her band responsibilities with ardent desperation. At first, Bexley and Roscoe were furious about losing the group’s most talented member, but they quickly found a replacement keyboardist to take Kieran’s place, suitably pacifying their melodramatic tempers. Still, now that he’s gone the song writing duties have fallen squarely onto Delilah’s shoulders, and she is anxious to prove to their numerous critics that the band’s popularity is more than just a passing fad. Fortunately, she has no shortage of inspiration lately, and her powerful lyrics about heartbreak and betrayal sound strikingly beautiful when paired with her skillful guitar accompaniment.
She makes sure to work in a couple of angry rock ‘n’ roll songs, too, complete with her signature crazy-rocker-chick face.
Her relationship with Beau moves slowly in the beginning, and he spends his first several weeks in Jericho sleeping on the sofa in the living room. Nevertheless, Beau proves wonderfully helpful and accommodating around the house, and Lila soon warms up to his presence in her life.
Still, despite sharing a bed now, Delilah steadfastly refuses to discuss their relationship or make any long term plans with him. We can talk after the baby is born, she stubbornly replies whenever he tries to bring it up.
Fortunately for Beau, he doesn’t have to wait very long. Delilah goes into labor several weeks before her due date.
And for good reason. She gives birth to triplets, two healthy baby boys and one rambunctious baby girl. Phoenix (blue) is the oldest, followed by Griffin (yellow) then Fable (pink).
With three newborns to care for, Beau and Delilah seldom get a minute alone together. Tonight, however, none of the triplets put up a fuss at bedtime, and Beau seizes upon the rare moment of peace to make an important announcement.
“I sold my house,” he tells Delilah with a tired grin.
Lila glances up sharply, startled by his news. “You own a house?” she demands.
Beau nods. “Owned, actually. In Bridgeport, but now that it’s sold we can buy a place together here in Jericho.”
Delilah frowns, her forehead crinkling in thought. “Are you sure?” she asks, doubt seeping into her words. “You don’t have to move here if you don’t want to.”
Chuckling, Beau leans over and lightly kisses her lips. “A pack of wolves couldn’t keep me away from you and the kids,” he replies firmly. “I want this. I want you,” he adds with a small smile.
Delilah sighs and joins him on the bed. “I can’t afford a new house, Beau” she tells him quietly. “Roscoe signed our band to his label when we were just teenagers, and he gave us a downright lousy deal. I won’t start taking home a decent paycheck until our contract is up for renewal in a couple of years. I’m sorry, baby, but moving just isn’t possible for me right now.”
Pulling her on top of him, Beau reaches up and brushes a strand of hair out of her face. “Darling, I will buy the house,” he whispers.
Delilah stiffens. “I can’t ask you to do that,” she replies with a scowl.
“And I can’t ask you, the mother of my children, to raise our babies in a tiny one bedroom apartment in the middle of the city,” he exclaims irritably. “They are sleeping in the living room right now, Delilah. They need a real house, with a nursery and a backyard and space to run and play.”
“It’s not fair to the kids, my darling. Besides, I want to do this for you. For us. For our family.”
Reluctantly, Delilah agrees to go look at a few houses with him the following weekend, and so that Saturday they leave the triplets with their Uncle Rigby and Aunt Heidi and head out to start their search. After a semi-long car drive, Beau and Delilah pull up in front of a secluded oak grove located at the end of a winding, dead-end street. They get out of the car, and Beau leads her down a well-worn path, past a small pond, and over a rickety wooden bridge.
“Close your eyes,” he commands as he takes her hands and guides her down the final few steps.
“Aaaand open,” Beau exclaims with an enthusiastic grin.
Delilah gasps at the sprawling old farmhouse stretching out before her eyes. Lush hydrangea bushes, towering sunflower stalks, and imposing oak trees adorn the sumptuous and expansive grounds, and the weathered stone house appears to wrap around a charmingly unkempt courtyard. Breathing in, Delilah smells the faint scent of lavender drift by on the warm autumn breeze, and the rustle of the wind carries nothing but the soothing sounds of nature on its breath.
“Do you like it?” Beau asks as they wander through the kitchen and dining room.
“It’s-” Delilah stops and sighs, her eyes alight with excitement. “Amazing,” she whispers.
“I’ve always dreamed of raising my children in the country,” Beau explains happily. “Away from the dirt and smog of the city, from the tabloids and paparazzi, the pressures of my career and the influences of the media. My grandparents owned a farm down south, and I spent every summer out there with them. I want to give my kids, our kids, those same wonderful memories.”
“I love it,” Lila gushes as she glances around the quaint, but endearing family room. “I never thought I would like a farmhouse, but this… This is beautiful.”
“You haven’t even seen the best part yet,” Beau beams.
Delilah can merely shake her head in awestruck disbelief as she walks into the adorable playroom.
“It’s perfect for them. For us,” she smiles before pulling Beau into a deep kiss. “Can you afford it?”
Beau chuckles and tweaks her nose affectionately. “Don’t worry, my darling. I wouldn’t tease you like that.”
True to his word, Beau calls the realtor that very same day, and less than a month later they move into their new home.
For a while, life settles into an easy and comfortable routine. Beau continues to work off and on, flying to the nearby city of Boscaster every few weeks to promote his newly released crime drama and drum up publicity for his upcoming role as the title character in a big budget action film, but for the most part he spends his days at home with Delilah and the triplets. Despite the never-ending diaper changes and frequent late night feedings, Beau adores his children, and he revels in his responsibilities as a new dad.
Lila never expected Beau to be such a loving and devoted father, but with three newborns to look after she welcomes his involvement with open arms. Snuggling her daughter close to her chest after a particularly long and fussy night, Delilah feels overwhelmed by gratitude toward her partner. What if Beau hadn’t wanted anything to do with her or the kids? She’d be all alone right now, trying to raise three babies in a tiny apartment without any help.
No, she reminds herself with a pang of regret. Kieran would be here. Sighing, she desperately tries to push his image out of her mind, but she can’t help but miss him at moments like this. He’d probably have found some other excuse to abandon me by now anyway, she thinks angrily.
“I’m not ready to come back yet,” Delilah exclaims the following week when Bexley drops by her new house for a chat. “My babies are still too young to be left with a sitter.”
“But your fans miss you,” Bexley declares with a dramatic sigh.
“What about Rigby and Austin? Can’t they-”
Bexley shakes her head. “You are the face and voice of the band, Delilah dear. They want to see you. Besides,” she adds with a moody scowl, “Roscoe was promoted to president, and he’s been on a power high lately. He keeps threatening to sack me if I can’t get you back on stage again by the end of the month.”
“Well, tell Roscoe that he can wait a while longer. I don’t want to start performing again until the triplets are at least six months old.”
“Six months old?!” Bexley cries. “That would be career suicide!”
“Fine,” Delilah retorts. “Then consider the band dead.”
“My priorities have changed, and with Beau around now I don’t need the work anymore.”
“You can’t quit,” Bexley proclaims with a distinct air of haughtiness in her voice. “Your contract-”
“My contract doesn’t give you the right to dictate my life,” Delilah cuts her off furiously. “You’ve meddled in my affairs too many times, Mrs. Maddox, and I for one am sick and tired of it. Get out of my house and don’t come back until you’ve lost the attitude.”
“But I told her I wasn’t ready to leave the babies yet, and then she started acting all pissy about it so I kicked her out!” Delilah gushes that evening when Beau gets home from the studio.
Chuckling at her excitement, Beau squeezes her hand adoringly. “I’m so proud of you, baby,” he grins. “Did you send in your resignation letter yet?”
“Oh, I didn’t officially resign,” Lila giggles. “I just threatened to.”
“Well, you should take care of that pretty soon,” Beau tells her absently. “You don’t want to drag it out now, do you?”
But Delilah doesn’t even hear him, too busy thinking about her earlier conversation with Bexley to pay him any attention.
After dinner, Beau proves to be in quite a frisky mood. Lifting Delilah up onto the counter, he runs his hand along the inside of her thigh and playfully, teasingly hikes up the edge of her skirt. Delilah grins against his tender kiss and responds by seductively wrapping her legs around his waist.
“Are you ready for this?” he mumbles as he pulls away slightly. While they shared a bed during her pregnancy, Lila never felt like doing anything besides sleeping in it, but now that the babies are almost two months old Beau is eager to test the waters again.
“Yes, absolutely,” Delilah tells him determinedly. Fumbling with his shirt, she stops suddenly as a thought crosses her mind. “Why?” she asks. “Aren’t you?”
Beau smiles in reply, and picking her up he sweeps her into the bedroom.
With a heated kiss, Beau lays Delilah down on the bed and removes her dress and jacket, savoring the touch of her bare skin pressed against his body. Lila eagerly slips her hands beneath his shirt, letting her fingers explore his sculpted, muscular chest as their lips collide in a flurry of passion, but Beau soon regains control. Pushing her back onto the covers, he holds her hands down and runs his mouth along the side of her neck, eliciting a satisfied groan from Delilah before pulling away and wriggling out of his top. She smiles at him shyly, feeling a bit self-conscious as his eyes trace her new, curvier figure, but with an appreciative growl Beau leans in and rips off her bra.
It’s been ages since either of them has been intimate with anybody, and so the sex feels almost overwhelming in its intensity. At the height of her orgasm, Delilah calls out to him, screaming the only name that comes to mind.
“Kieran!” she moans as she trembles and shakes from the ecstasy.
Beau tries to brush it off as nothing, a slip-up that anybody could have made, but he doesn’t sleep well that night as her voice, shouting another man’s name, plays over and over again in his head.
Delilah, for her part, doesn’t even realize she made a mistake, so Beau’s cold behavior toward her the following day feels hurtful and confusing. Nevertheless, she goes about her daily chores without a word, trying to shrug off his aloofness as exhaustion from their previous night together.
Setting Griffin down in his crib, Delilah hears a knock at the front door. “I’ll get it,” she tells Beau gruffly, assuming it must be Bexley back for round two.
“Dad!” Delilah exclaims excitedly as she throws her arms around his neck in a warm embrace. “And Emily too! I didn’t know you guys were coming for a visit,” she beams at them.
Luca, her father, welcomes the exuberant greeting, and he pulls his eldest daughter in for a tight hug. “We should’ve called ahead, but with everything going on yesterday we forgot,” he mumbles apologetically.
Delilah frowns, noticing her father’s tired, raspy voice. “Everything going on?” she asks. “What happened, Dad?”
Luca doesn’t say anything, instead moving to stand next to his wife Emily. Delilah watches them closely, her eyes darting back and forth between Luca’s pinched, worried gaze and Emily’s blotchy, tearstained face. “What happened?” she repeats again, more sternly this time.
Just then, Atticus appears at her door.
“Delilah,” he forces himself to smile. “May I come in?”
Lila nods and beckons him inside. “Grandpa?” she greets him with a scowl. “What are you doing here?”
“We need to talk, Delilah,” he tells her somberly. “It’s about Kieran.”
Lila feels the room begin to spin at the mention of Kieran’s name. She glances over at Emily, whose now sobbing softly in Luca’s arms, before turning her full attention back to Atticus. “What happened?” she demands in a piercingly sharp voice.
“Can we sit down, honey?” Luca chimes in. “I’d rather-”
“What. Happened.” She spits the words at Atticus, her eyes never once leaving his cold, impassive face.
Taking a deep breath, Atticus nods curtly. “Kieran…” he hesitates ever so slightly, as though struggling to find an easier way to tell her. “Kieran died, Delilah,” he says at last.
Wow, busy chapter! I probably should have split it up into two, but I couldn’t find a good place to stop.
Let’s see here, what do I need to talk about? Oh yes. The challenge. ;D Beau and Delilah are now *officially* living together. According to her roll, she gets to have a partner, so that solves that little mystery. =D I moved Beau in before the babies were born, but holy crap it was a really close call! The triplets honestly did arrive early, or so it seemed anyway. I thought Sim pregnancies lasted 72 hours, but I don’t think this one even reached the 70 hour mark.
TRIPLETS! *dies* I was aiming for twins, as Delilah only rolled for one kid and I couldn’t bear to raise a singleton, but I definitely overshot it a little. I made her listen to kids’ music all day long on a portable boom box, and I may have given her the fertility treatment LTR on the sly. =P However, I made certain to shut off the quadruplets “feature” right before she went into labor. I seriously don’t need four little brats terrorizing poor Delilah, even if Beau is around to help out.
I have no idea what I was thinking when I named the babies like that, by the way. It was late, and I was tired, and it seemed like a good idea at the time. I’ve been dying to use the name Fable for a girl (nickname Fae), and I really wanted something that wasn’t matchy matchy for the boys. But yikes, did I ever fail! Well, at least they don’t rhyme…
So, I bet you’re wondering how a first generation founder Sim can afford such a large house, eh? Well, I shall tell you. ;) While I absolutely consider Delilah to be my “founder”, she isn’t technically my first generation. Basically, I caved and gave her the money that Luca (her rich doctor dad) earned during his time as my founder. He lived by all the challenge rules and never cheated or anything like that, so I figured it was fair game. I plan to pay it back, too, if that helps any. I’m just sick and tired of watching my Sims live in crummy little houses, and I really wanted to use one of the lots that I’d already built. Am I lazy? Yes. Am I cheating? Well, that’s up for debate.
What else? Oh yeah. Kieran. *sobs hysterically* If it is any consolation at all, I can promise you that my next update will explain it ten times better than I could this chapter. Still though… :’(
P.S. I promise I'll actually respond to comments this time. /fail