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Greg
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Post Posted: Fri May 13, 2005 2:51 pm
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Tales of Happy Valley
Chapter 23: The Impetuous Proposal


People often told Giles that he was dangerously impetuous, while he thought of himself as being decisive. While lesser mortals would have dithered over the decision for months or even years, Giles reached a major life's decision in mere minutes.


Giles Proposes to Frieda

And so, on his first day in Happy Valley, on the day that is cousin Barry was born, the day that he first met his cousin Greg and their extended family, and the very day that he met Miss Frieda Baybrace, he determined that he would make her his wife.

He didn't need to know more about Frieda than he already knew. After all, considering her apparel, what secrets could she be hiding?

Now, to say that Frieda was quite taken with Giles would be quite the understatement, but when he surprised her with a diamond ring on that fateful night, she eagerly accepted his proposal. Besides the love that had overwhelmed her the moment she first set eyes upon him, Frieda had reasons of her own not to hesitate in making such a major move in her life. Frieda did, indeed, have secrets that she had kept to herself for a very long time.

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Post Posted: Fri May 13, 2005 3:06 pm
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Tales of Happy Valley
Chapter 24: The Hasty Marriage


Now, just before she accepted the engagement ring, Frieda held Giles close and whispered her deep, dark secret to him. She feared that he would be put off, that she would have spoiled their whirlwind relationship just as it was getting started.

But Frieda was only just getting to know Giles. Not at all deterred by Frieda's secret, he said, "All the more reason for us to press on! Let's get married tonight!"


Giles and Frieda Tie the Knot

And so, that very night, in a very private (and very informal*) ceremony, Giles and Frieda exchanged their wedding vows.

It was the beginning of a happy partnership that would last beyond a lifetime and touch the lives of people all around the globe.




*The groom was resplendent in informal black. The bride wore white, but only in the regions between her tan lines.

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Post Posted: Fri May 13, 2005 3:11 pm
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Tales of Happy Valley
Chapter 25: Barry's First Bottle



Greg Feeds Barry His First Bottle

Oblivious to the momentous events taking place on the patio, events inside Manse Orleans proceeded with abnormal domestic tranquility.

She seemed to be feeling quite pensive, perhaps coping with a mild case of post-partum depression, so Gregsim took over caring for baby Barry.

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Post Posted: Fri May 13, 2005 3:14 pm
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Tales of Happy Valley
Chapter 26: Best Friends



Getting to Know You

Like all of Greg's children, Barry was a very affectionate child. He wanted a lot of cuddling, and of course his dad was happy to tap an endless supply of hugs for the youngster. Even before the night was through, their bonding was complete and Barry was best friends with his father.

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Post Posted: Fri May 13, 2005 3:45 pm
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Tales of Happy Valley
Chapter 27: Bedtime for Barry



Barry's First Night in His Crib

Finally it was time to put the little tyke down for a long night's rest. Greg reluctantly laid Barry in his crib and said goodnight, knowing that like all his children, baby Barry would sleep soundly* until he was awakened by the morning light.





*With the assistance of a game hack

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Post Posted: Fri May 13, 2005 4:14 pm
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Tales of Happy Valley
Chapter 28: Of School and She




Finally! Some Time for Themselves!

With the kids all safely snuggled in their beds and their house guest busy with his new girlfriend out on the patio, Greg finally had some time for Her. While they were happily snuggling on the love seat, She brought up the subject that had been on her mind all evening.

"Sweetie, I really miss the girls, now that they're away at the university, and I always wanted to go to college myself."

"Me, too," he agreed. "They keep offering me assistantships. They'd pay me to teach while I'm taking a degree." He chuckled. "As if we needed the money! We'd end donating the money for our assistantships!"

"I know. It's just their way of making sure you know they are sincere about wanting you to teach there. So, I was thinking, maybe we could go? Now that Giles is here, he could take care of Manse Orleans for us; and I really think he'd like us out from underfoot so that he can pursue young ladies. Do you think we could be on campus without cramping the girls' style?"

With a happy snort, he said, "Since when have we ever cramped their style? But I know what you mean. We couldn't move into that big house that we built for them on campus. That would be way too much of parental presence! We might find a place nearby, though. Our own place. There's no way I'm going to live in a dorm, not even one of those urban palaces that Tommy's boy has been building."

He nuzzled her for a moment while he was thinking. "Darn, I can't think of any place near campus that would really do. I think we'd have to send the construction crew down and build our own place!"

She hugged him and squealed with delight.

"What?" he asked, but she just grinned at him.

Some mercilous tickling brought on more squealing, accompanied by some very pleasant wiggling about. Then finally--

"All right! Pax! Let me breathe! King's X! I'll tell you!"

"So?"

"Well, it's just that I'm happy you are thinking that way, because I already sent Gloria down to the campus to buy some dirt!"


Last edited by Greg on Thu Aug 04, 2005 7:04 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post Posted: Fri May 13, 2005 7:04 pm
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Tales of Happy Valley
Chapter 29: Hymnus Angelicus


She has dozens of friends in and around Happy Valley, and most of them are best friends, but first and foremost among them is her friend, confessor, advisor, and most trusted operative, the thoroughly angelic Miss Gloria Baybrace.


Gloria Baybrace, Operative Extraordinaire, at Her Home in Happy Valley

Whenever She needs something done and doesn't want to bug anybody in Her husband's organization, She calls on Gloria. It's an arrangement that suits Gloria quite well. In addition to the fact that Gloria is extraordinarily and unabashedly fond of Her, these assignments give her lots amusing adventures and extra money to supplement her income as a medical technician.

Gloria found herself at a crossroads. She enjoyed her med tech job, but even more, she enjoyed working for Her. Then they built Happy Valley University. She really, really wanted to go to college where she could learn more about the world and advance her career, but she didn't want to give up Her adventures.

Neither Gloria nor She were quite aware that the perfect solution to this conundrum was already a-brewing in both of their minds until they discussed it, just three days before Barry was born.




Gloria is Frieda's sister. They and five other sisters were originally born in the Babe Race (get it?), a spoof of the Baby Race, which tragically was lost forever in The Bomb. The characters survived in transit in an empty household and have since gone on to become solid citizens of Happy Valley. Even their opportunistic brother, Billy Ray Baybrace, pops up once in a while.


Last edited by Greg on Tue Aug 02, 2005 9:21 am; edited 2 times in total

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Post Posted: Fri May 13, 2005 7:38 pm
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Tales of Happy Valley
Chapter 30: Plotting and Scheming



Gloria: Genesis of a Plan

"So, how's the baby? Frieda said she'd be there to help out any time you need her."

"It should be any time now, but I don't know when this little guy is going to launch! He seems to like it right where he is!"

A merry laugh escaped Gloria's lips. "It sounds like he takes after his father already!"

"Oh, that's terrible!" She said. "I love it!"

"We're so bad. We really should be ashamed of ourselves!"

"And the chances of that happening are?"

"Somewhere between abysmal and that proverbial snowball! Bad forever! Or at least as long as the guys don't find out!"

"Speaking of the guys not finding out..."

"Uh huh. You mean The Guy in particular."

"Exactly."

"I'm on it, She! What do you need me to do?"

"Go to college."

"Yes! That's my final answer! But we're not there yet. Let's start with... Huh? I was thinking about doing that, but I really like my job here, and I'd miss you--"

"That's only part of it. I want you to go down to the campus town and buy a big chunk of land, the bigger the better as long as it's close in, preferably close to my girls. Then get those architects from the Pearl Construction Company drawing up plans for a big house."

"Bigger than Manse Orleans?"

"Huge. Big enough to be converted to a dorm or a frat house when we're done with it."

"You'll make a mint off of that! Rents are sky-high on campus!"

"Yup. That's the long-range strategy, but right now I want a big house on campus, and I want you in it. I need an on-campus operative, and you're what I want."

"I love the idea, but what kind of house do you really want? I don't need a big house just to represent you on campus. You're up to something, and it involves him, which is why you don't want him to know!"

"You're good, Gloria! That's why I need you!"

"Aw, I just thought you loved me for my peach cobbler!"

"I love you for lots of reasons! But right now I need you because you can get this done, and I'll need you on campus. He's going back to school!"

"But he just doesn't know it yet, right?"

"Right! He'll decide it's time to do that just as soon as the baby is born and I can get somebody to watch Manse Orleans for us--"

"Oh, Frieda would be happy to house-sit for you. She has always been gaga over Manse Orleans. You know I would, too, but it sounds like I'll be living on campus for the next four years!"

"Yet bet! And we'll be there, too! If you can hold off on mentioning it to Frieda until he finds out that he's decided that this is what he wants to do, that would be good. She likes to talk, y'know."

"I understand. She'll want to kill me for keeping secrets from her, but she'll understand when she finds out why."

"Good girl!"

"OK, She, I'm on it! I'll keep you informed as things progress. Codeword, um, 'Detroit'."

"'Detroit.' Got it. OK, hon, love you!"

"Love you, too!"

>click<

Dial, dial, dial...

"Hi boss, it's Gloria. Better start looking for a new med tech stat. I'm going back to college!"

"..."

"Thanks. Yeah, I know. But Henry is coming along, and Jana will help out until he's up to par with the ambulance procedures."

"..."

"OK then! Thanks, boss! You're the greatest!"

>click<

Dial, dial, dial...

"Hi Jenny! Hey, I've got a job for The Pearl. Another sub rosa..."


Last edited by Greg on Sat Jul 16, 2005 5:16 am; edited 1 time in total

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Post Posted: Fri May 13, 2005 7:58 pm
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Tales of Happy Valley
Chapter 31: Gloria Baybrace, The Collegiate Edition


Oh my! Gloria thinks. If I'm going to go to college, I'd better look the part!

All right now, Gloria, think young thoughts. College thoughts. Hmm... let's try for Blonde Bimbo On Campus...



Gloria's College Duds

Yeah, this will do nicely!

"Well, what do you think?" Gloria says. "Do I look like a college student now?"

Oh, for pity's sake! What am I doing? First I looked at the camera, and now I'm talking to the audience! Discipline, Gloria, discipline! Verb tense! Viewpoint! You'll get through this!

"Della! Are you upstairs? I have a new project and you're on the team! Move it down here, girl! I have work for you to do!"

Gloria's sister, Della, called down the steps. "What do you mean I'm on the team? Tell me what the job is before I agree to anything!"

"Wanna go to college?"

"Yes! So, what do you need me to do, boss?"




[align=center:167dc4d6e0]Jump to Chapter 32: The Bennetts Go To College
This link jumps past the discussion. [/align:167dc4d6e0]


Last edited by Greg on Fri Aug 05, 2005 11:59 pm; edited 3 times in total

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Nancy
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Post Posted: Sat May 14, 2005 3:02 am
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Gloria definitely looks the part of the college student!!! :winky:

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Liss
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Post Posted: Sat May 14, 2005 11:13 am
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wow she is sooo pretty...

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Greg
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Post Posted: Sat May 14, 2005 2:20 pm
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Nancy wrote:
Gloria definitely looks the part of the college student!!!


Aw, it's just something she bought off the rack. smile

I think I'm going to work on clothing for college students, especially the guys. The outfits for college girls tend to vary between slutty and how-much-do-you-charge-for-an-hour, but the guys' clothing is pretty much universally slob. Without custom clothing, it is impossible to create a male college student who dresses like the guys I knew in college or even the students I taught at UNLV. (And I can only wish that real-world co-eds dressed like that!)

Hmmm... to say more about that would be to get ahead of the story.



Liss wrote:
wow she is sooo pretty...


On behalf of Gloria's parents, grandparents, and genetic stock dating back through untold generations, I thank you! smile

Hmmm... maybe that's why She is so fond of her. Gloria seems to have that effect on people. Including you-know-who, in his former life as a reprobate.*

In reality, the Baybrace girls were among the first sims I ever made, and I invested an entire day in tweaking their features. They all turned out pretty nice but I'd say that Gloria was the pinnacle of my success with that family. She was the 7th Baybrace, which you can tell from her name. The names of the 7 Baybrace sisters are alphabetized.

I was tempted to name them Pleiades. The Seven Sisters, y'know. But I couldn't resist the pun on "Babe Race."


*Nowadays he just wants to be a reprobate, but She has her own opinions on that subject. Even then, these characters continue to surprise me, which, I hope, will become increasingly evident as the story unfolds.

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Post Posted: Sat May 14, 2005 3:18 pm
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Tales of Happy Valley
Chapter 32: The Bennetts Go To College


"OK, Honey," She said. "The van is on its way and the kids are all packed up! We're ready to go!"

"Great!" Greg said. "I'll call for a car--"

"Oops! No, not a car. Call for the chopper."

"What? The heliocoffin? I don't recall there being a helipad anywhere near the university, and if we got to the airfield it's just as far to drive as it would be from here."

"Just trust me on this one," She said.

"OK, you're the boss!" Hoo boy! I get into more trouble that way!

"What was that?"

"I didn't say anything!"

"No, but you thought it!"

"Oh, for pity's sake. Is this mind-reading a Captain Hero thing?"

"No, it's a blonde thing. Now, just call the chopper! I want you to see the new house while it's still daylight!"



Farewell to Manse Orleans

And so, with a hug and kiss for Giles and Frieda, the Bennetts piled the kids into the helicopter and bid a fond farewell to the stately grace of Manse Orleans. Alexander and Amanda were especially subdued. They gazed wistfully out the windows as the helicopter lifted off.

Greg leaned close to Her and whispered, "Are the kids OK?"

"It's the only home they've ever known," She said. "They'll need some time to adjust."

"Yeah," he said. "Me, too."

"You're not alone. Our kids were born in that house. We got married there! Memories run deep--"

"I know, sweetheart," he said, holding her close. "Good memories. Lots of good memories."

She chuckled. "Remember the hookers in the basement?"

"OK, so not all good memories--"

"Oh, I thought they were cute. I just didn't want them in my basement!"

"So, tell me about our new place! You've been so mysterious about it--"

"Nope, not until we get there. I want you to see it for yourself."

As the helicopter lifted over the mountain ridge south of town, Happy Valley's university district lay spread out before them. They followed the main road toward the university for a few minutes and then began to veer west as they descended.

Greg craned his neck, gawking like a tourist. "This is the first time I've seen the Big U from the air. Hey! There's the engineering building! Worth every penny I spent on it! So, which one is ours?"

"Do you see the girls' house just ahead?"

"Yup. From up here it looks even more like home. I kinda wish we could just move in there, but I don't want to crowd the girls."

"OK, look one block west. See the helipad?"

He looked. The helipad grew larger in the windshield as they descended toward it. His mind began to encompass all that was their new home.

Very gently, she lifted one shapely index finger and pushed his jaw shut.

"Holy merde!" he said. "Did you warn the governor he's going to have to move out?"


Last edited by Greg on Sat Mar 29, 2008 9:01 pm; edited 2 times in total

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Post Posted: Sat May 14, 2005 3:56 pm
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Tales of Happy Valley
Chapter 33: Touchdown



The Bennetts Arrive at Their New Home

It was mid-morning in Happy Valley when they arrived on Sunday, Day 73. Gloria and her sister Della were running out to greet them even as the helicopter touched down at their private helipad.

"Well kids, this is it!" She said. "The swimming pool is a little smaller than back home but the yard is a lot larger! You'll have lots more room to play! And you each get your own room now!"

"My own room!" Amanda said. "All right! Hey, Alex!" Swat. "Tag! You're it!"

Della hadn't had a chance to meet baby Barry, so she made a beeline for him. "Oh, he's even cuter than his picture in the paper! He inherited your looks, She. Lucky kid!"

Gloria greeted Greg with a friendly hug, and then held on for a while, trembling.

"What is it, Gloria?" he asked. When he looked at her, he saw that her eyes were sparkling, with a gathering mist that could go either way. "You seem as nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs!"

"Oh, I hope you like it!" she said. "Please like it!"

"It's fantastic!" he said. "A bit ostentatious, for sure, but you know me! Anything worth doing is worth over-doing! I love it!"

"Thank gawud!" she said, rewarding his appreciation with a peck on his cheek. "I've been a nervous wreck all through the construction! Afraid you'd see it before it was ready. Afraid you wouldn't like it when you did see it. Afraid I'd screw up somewhere."

He kissed her back and gave her a quick squeeze. "That's our Gloria! Professional worrier! But I understand. This was the biggest project She has handed you yet, so I can guess how scary it must have been. But the results are darn well worth it. This place is great! Well, at least on the outside."

She took his hint. "Whew! I'm so glad you like it! Now, if you're done quoting yourself, I'll take you on a tour!"

"Let's do it!" he said. "Just one rule--"

"Eh?"

"Do not, under any circumstances, tell me how much this joint cost me. I truly do not want to know!"


Last edited by Greg on Fri Aug 05, 2005 11:58 pm; edited 3 times in total

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Post Posted: Sat May 14, 2005 4:33 pm
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Tales of Happy Valley
Chapter 34: Manse Collegium



Manse Collegium, Back Yard
You can download Manse Collegium and tour the facilities in this topic about Manse Collegium.

"It's got three balconies and the patio," Gloria was saying. "I haven't put in an outside spa yet because none of us could guess where you'd want it. The patio is a little smaller than the one at Manse Orleans."

"No worries," Greg said. "Let's put in a nice patio between the pool and the garage. Maybe a barbecue and some deck chairs."

Gloria made a note. "OK, I'm on that one. The space above the garage is useable but I wasn't sure what you'd want to do with it. Maybe that wood shop you've always wanted--"

"Nah. I don't want to have to haul things up and down the stairs. Put the wood shop on hold. Maybe I'll build it back in town and just run back there any time I want to pretend I'm Norm Abrams."

"Good enough," she said. "If you want to putter around while you're here, there's also lots of room in the basement."

"Let's think about a science lab for the kids above the garage," he said. "If I can't do Norm Abrams, I can always do Don Herbert! I like the big decks. It looks the kids will be able to cover most of the sky with their telescopes if they move them around."


Manse Collegium, Curb Appeal Overkill

"It has seven bedrooms," she said, "counting the servants' quarters. There's really room for more bedrooms so that it can be converted to a frat house if you ever want to do that. I didn't know how much staff you wanted to bring with you so I outfitted it for four--"

"Good. We'll need a lot of help to run this place. But let's start with a housekeeper and handybabe and see how it goes. See if Kaylynn can come in during the day to help with the cleaning. We might get along without a live-in maid. Make sure you get Kaylynn, not Lucy. We're already working Lucy to death and she's trying to get her college degree on top of it."







I know, Liss, but this one isn't done yet and I want to play-test it before I convert it for downloading.
Addendum 5/21/2005: Which I have now done. See this topic about Manse Collegium.

Vehicles by The Sim Republic.


Last edited by Greg on Fri Nov 25, 2005 1:46 am; edited 6 times in total

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