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Zach arrived home, very upset with himself for the scene he had caused with Diane's... well, almost-husband. If he kept this up, the whole town would be suspicious before he could even confirm it was true.
"Come here, tiger!" Zach growled in mock menace, and swung a giggling Ryan round and round...
Spinning and spinning...



What if she should ever decide to show up at the house? Her greeting alone could cause real trouble...



And if the baby was his, would he be able to hold back? Three bolts was nothing compared to how sexy he found a woman willing to bear his child. Just ask Nikki...



"Who is Daddy kissing, Mommy?"
"Go in the house, Ryan. Daddy is going to have to leave."
"NO, he can't..."
"Ryan? In the house, NOW!"
Wishing and wishing and wishing he could take back that night with Kerie Ng. Wishing he could take it all back.
"DAAAAD..." Ryan sobbed.




"DAAAAD, stop! This isn't fun anymore, I'm gonna throw up!"
Zach set Ryan down and both of them gratefully took deep breaths of the cool, wonderfully pungent air that comes with the occasional desert rain shower.
"I was going to be sick! Don't do that again, 'kay, Dad?"
"I won't, Ryan, promise."
He placed his hands on Ryan's shoulders and they marched unsteadily to the front door together. Before they entered the house, he bent down and kissed his son's cheek.
I won't do it again, Zach vowed again silently, this time to Nikki.
....




Over at the Cameron household, Madeleine Mazza also received a wedding invitation.
"Of course I'll be there, Diane! I have to ask, though, is your formalwear decent?"
....
"Good to hear, a frowny plumbbob on the bodice wouldn't do at all," Madeleine teased with a laugh.
....
"Sounds lovely, let me know if you need anything."



"Would you like to go to Diane's wedding too?"
"I'll pass. Weddings aren't really my style."
"Okay," Madeleine smiled.
That was the good thing about just being friends and roommates... no obligations, on either side.
"What do you think about going into business together?" Neil asked.



"What did you have in mind?"
"I'll leave that up to you."
"Okay... something fun, then."
"You made this old codger's twilight years much more fun when you moved in, Madeleine."
"Call me Maddie."
"You're very pretty when you smile, Maddie."
"Neil!" Her smile grew even wider.
"So do we have a deal, Maddie?"
"It's a deal, Neil."
And then they both burst out laughing.



"I'm making chili if you want some."



After lunch, Madeleine went to her favorite hobby lot to start working on a couple of outfits for the store she and Neil would be running together.
....




In the meantime, Marie Sims became the proud owner of Just Desserts, a small bakery that would put her mad cooking skills to good use. Lucky Mesa Vista!



"Woo, I'm ready to get this show on the road!"



But first there was the tiny matter of maxing the rest of her skills.



The last skill Marie needed was Mechanical, and she was all over the invitation she received to visit Will's Garage. What better way than to work on some automotive clunkers?



But the only clunkers she found in the first building weren't quite what she expected.



The middle building looked like a waiting room, so Marie went to the last one on the left.
"A train set?" she muttered. This wasn't exactly what she'd had in mind... guess she'd have to find someone to ask.



Back at the first building, Marie finally found someone at Will's Garage who looked like a legitimate mechanic.
"I was wondering if you could point me in the direction of the cars to work on?"



"No cars here. We have a train set though."
"But... you're a mechanic and this is a garage. What gives?"
"Don't ask me, miss, I just work here."



"*Grrr* Frickin' waste of my time, I'm outta here."



She went back home and happily maxed out her Mechanical the old fashioned way, and became Mesa Vista's first perma-plat resident.



Marie also wanted to show her stuff in a cooking contest, but as a former Celebrity Chef townie with maxed Cooking, who oddly enough had no enthusiasm for Cuisine, she couldn't gain it by skilling. She had a ton of baking to do to fill Just Desserts' food cases, though, which helped.



Taste-testing her creations was essential and luckily increased her enthusiasm as well.
"I'm glad you stopped by, Zach, I need an objective opinion. I want you to be brutally honest and tell me what you think of this cheesecake."
"In my brutally honest opinion, it's the best cheesecake I ever tasted."



"I would appreciate it if you would return my honesty in kind, Marie."
"I'll try," she said a little warily, her mind starting to race. She found Zach very attractive, even if he was married. Does he want to..? And if he does, do I want him to?
"What do you know about Kerie and her baby?"
First Nikki, and now Kerie... and a strange sense of urgency she could hear in his voice.
Suddenly Marie wasn't too keen on Zach anymore and where her thoughts about him had been going. "Honestly? Kerie doesn't confide in me," she said as she abruptly got up from her chair. "Excuse me, I still have a lot of baking to do."



"DAMMIT!" Marie shouted, but still managed to quite deftly pull out a fire extinguisher.
"OH MY GOD, DO SOMETHING!" Zach yelled, dancing around in panic.
"I'M TRYING! Stay back, idiot!"



Once the crisis in the kitchen was over, Zach blithely followed Marie into the bathroom while she washed away the smoke and grime.
"I've got to hand it to you," he called over the running water, "you dealt with that fire like a real pro!"
"Get your ass out of here, Zach, because I swear, you and your wife do not want to know how I deal with voyeuristic pervs."
Zach laughed nervously. "Sorry, I wasn't thinking."
"Sure you weren't."



"Let's try this again," Marie said to a fresh pan of chocolate cake batter.
"Sorry about that, Marie. I'll be going now."
"Good idea."
"You know, you really are something."
"I used to be, and I intend to again right here in Mesa Vista."
"You're really something now."
"I know that too, Zach, but thank you for saying so."
And as Zach left for home, he thought, Whoever said small towns were boring had obviously never encountered the likes of Marie Sims.



After stashing another perfect chocolate cake in her inventory, Marie settled herself on the sofa and began reading the Cuisine section with enthusiasm.
....


Okay, that's all for Part 1 of Week 3. Stay tuned for weddings, honeymoons, babies and more in Part 2.
Thank you for reading and Happy Simming!

Date: 2012-02-20 10:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] joandsarah.livejournal.com
Really disliking Zac, what a perv.

I've never even taken a sim to Will's Garage, just never bothered. So thanks for the tour and now I know I’ve been missing out on nothing. Lol it looks about as useful as most of the secret lots.



Date: 2012-02-23 02:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lorinsv60.livejournal.com
I sort of figured that Zach's LTW to be Head of the SCIA could mean he doesn't have the best moral compass.

I was really disappointed in Will's Garage, but this challenge is awesome for giving me the chance to do all the stuff in the game I haven't before, so it's all good.

Thanks for your comments, I love getting feedback on my characters. :)

Date: 2012-02-27 07:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] apricotfiend.livejournal.com
I like how you've made your BaCC into a kind of small-town soap opera :) Off to see what happens next now.

Oh, also, the bakery building is adorable. :)

Date: 2012-02-28 04:29 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lorinsv60.livejournal.com
Hi, thanks! Small-town soap opera is exactly what I'm going for, as much to distinguish the families in my head and keep them more interesting to play as much as anything, especially since the BaCC is such a long challenge.

Thanks about the bakery, I'm pleased with it too. :)

Date: 2012-12-03 07:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] j68-birka.livejournal.com
Good luck with the cafe, Marie!

Date: 2012-12-13 06:21 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lorinsv60.livejournal.com
Thanks! Marie's one of my favorites.

Date: 2016-03-14 08:47 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] simlili.livejournal.com
Wow, Zach really isn't a very likeable character :D

Also not very smooth in his inquiries about Kerie's pregnancy. If that's how you expect to top Intelligence, Zach, good luck :p

Date: 2016-03-21 03:48 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lorinsv60.livejournal.com
Nope, no Gary Stu here :D

Lol! He definitely lost his edge (and kind of his mind) with the enormity of his regret, and the loss of control over the situation.

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