Monday, August 29, 2011
Chapter 0.2: Something Like A Second Chance
With her mailbox already full of bills, Beatrix hires a babysitter and goes job hunting. She interviews for countless jobs but only gets one offer. She cautiously accepts, and on Monday she puts on her uniform and heads down to the fire station for her first day as a firefighter.
With a nervous smile, Beatrix introduces herself to her heavily pregnant boss, Serenity Starr. As the only two women in the Anne Arbor fire department, they immediately hit it off. Bea thinks Serenity's purple hair is fabulous. If only she were so brave.
Serenity offers to show Beatrix around the city, and they agree to meet downtown at a local bar the following evening. Serenity never shows up, and Beatrix assumes she's probably gone into labor. About time too.
With the babysitter already hired and paid for, Bea decides to take advantage of her night out and have a few drinks. The bar is dead except for one other person, a young man with perfect hair and polished shoes. As he casually orders a drink, Beatrix can't help but notice his effortless charm and sophisticated demeanor. She carefully watches him out of the corner of her eye, making sure to keep her distance. These slick city boys make her nervous.
She tries to avoid him, but as the only two customers in the entire bar she soon finds herself face to face with the stranger.
"I haven't seen you around before," he grins at her, totally self-assured. Beatrix immediately picks up on the rich playboy vibe. As their eyes meet, Bea feels herself blush. She's never been one to play shy, but she's never met anyone so glamorous before either.
They shake hands, his grip firm and steady. "I'm Beatrix," she states matter-of-factly. She tries to be just as confident and carefree as him, but she comes across sounding disinterested instead.
"Nice to meet your Beatrix," he says, his eyes locked on hers. "I'm Brian. Brian Locklear."
"So, are you new to Anne Arbor?" he asks.
"Yes, I just moved here last week," she replies.
"And how do you like our lovely little city so far?" Beatrix senses a hint of sarcasm in his voice.
"It's very different from where I grew up, that's for sure."
"Oh? How so?" He gazes at her intently, his curiosity peaked.
"I come from a small farming town. Where everybody knows your name, your business, and your great uncle's second cousin."
Brian laughs, a deep, rich sound that echoes from his chest. "Well, I'd love to show you around sometime," he tells her. "Perhaps we can start with my bedroom," he adds with a wink.
Bea's mouth falls open in shock. She's never met anyone so cocky. The confident smirk on his face irks her.
"And that is my cue to leave," she announces as she heads for the door.
"Wait! Beatrix!" he calls after her.
She whips around, coming face to face with him.
"Yes Brian?" she asks impatiently. She's tired and cranky and wants to get home to her son.
"I'm sorry. I shouldn't have said that. Most women find that line irresistible."
"Well, I'm not most women," Bea retorts. "And where I come from, arrogance is considered a flaw not a turn-on."
And with that, she turns around and walks out of the bar, leaving Brian alone with his thoughts.
"She's definitely not from around here," Brian mutters to himself, a small grin on his face.
The following afternoon, Beatrix decides to take Skylar, her son, out for a stroll to the park. When she arrives back at the lobby of her building, a familiar voice calls out her name.
"Hi Beatrix," Brian says affably.
"Brian?!" Bea looks at him with surprise. "Why are you in my building?" she asks bluntly.
"I was a visiting a friend of mine, Nina on floor 12. I didn't realize you lived here also." He smiles, pleased to be running into her so soon after their last encounter.
Bea glares at him. She's not happy about seeing him again.
Brian looks down and sees the baby in Bea's arms. "Is that your son?" he asks, his face impassive.
Beatrix scans the floor, too embarrassed to make eye contact. "Yes," she mumbles. She loves Skylar dearly, but she worries about how people will react to her being such a young mother.
"Oh," Brian begins, looking around awkwardly. "I didn't realize."
Beatrix just stands there silently, avoiding his curious stare.
"So, is his father in the picture?" Brian doesn't want to push it, but subtly is not his forte.
Bea laughs. "Is that all you think about Brian?!" She sounds both exasperated and amused.
Brian grins at her. "I like you. So shoot me."
Beatrix feels her heart beating so loudly that she wonders if Brian can hear it too. Something about him makes her stomach do somersaults. She hasn't felt this way since Ethan left, and it scares her.
"Brian, I've got to go. It's time for baby's nap," she lies. She quickly excuses herself and makes her way to the elevator.
She doesn't need to get her heartbroken again. Not so soon after losing Ethan.
Graceful, Beatrix. Real graceful.
Skylar becomes a toddler. He has Ethan's hair and eye color.
And this is what happens when you leave your toddler alone with the babysitter.... A Giant Red Plumbob.
Childcare is very expensive, and Beatrix finds herself struggling to pay the bills. The repo-woman looks like she's enjoying herself.
To Beatrix's dismay, Brian decides to drop by unannounced one evening. While Skylar plays quietly in his room, Brian and Beatrix discuss the recent rise in burglaries around the neighborhood. Although he's pretty vague, Bea discovers that Brian works at the local police department. What exactly he does there is a mystery.
"You know, you never answered my question," Brian tells her as they get up off the sofa.
"About Skylar's father... If he's in the picture or not."
Bea sighs. The evening was going so well. Brian hadn't made a single move all night.
"No," she says quietly. "He's not."
"So there's no large, muscular boyfriend who's going to beat me up if I ask you out?"
Beatrix blushes. "Brian. I think you're sweet, I really do..."
"But..." he interrupts.
"But," Beatrix continues, "I'm not dating right now. Skylar is the only man I need, and he is more than enough to deal with at the moment."
Brian frowns. It's obvious that rejection doesn't sit well with him. "You know, Beatrix, I can be pretty persistent when I want to be."
Bea laughs. "And I can be pretty stubborn when I want to be," she says with a smile.
It's getting late, and Brian is about to leave when he hears wailing coming from Skylar's bedroom. With Beatrix in the kitchen at the other end of the house, he decides to check on the little guy.
He finds Skylar sitting on the floor throwing a tantrum. He swiftly scoops up the child and distracts him with a game of the tickle monster. Sky loves the attention and finds Brian's antics hilarious.
Bea hears the commotion, and quickly makes her way to Skylar's bedroom.
She quietly walks into the room and is shocked by what she sees. Brian has Skylar dressed and ready for bed. She watches silently as he expertly soothes Sky's tearful protests and lays him down to sleep. The toddler falls asleep within minutes.
They noiselessly exit the room, and Beatrix closes the door behind them.
"I didn't know you were so good with kids," she tells him as they make their way back to the living room.
"There's a lot of things you don't know about me," Brian responds. "If we ever went on that date, you might be surprised by the things you'd learn."
Bea smiles shyly. She never thought of Brian as the nurturing type, and she has to admit she was impressed. What other tricks did he have up his sleeve?
"Well, it's getting late and I better go," he announces.
Before he leaves, Brian gently grabs Beatrix's hand. "Think about my offer, okay?" he says quietly.
As his hand brushes against hers, Bea's breath catches in her chest. Before she can reply, however, he turns and goes, leaving Beatrix feeling more confused than ever.
Sorry for spamming pictures of Brian this chapter, but OMG I love him! I think he's my favorite Sim EVER, and I have no idea why. I literally squeal every time he pops up. And what is so frustrating is that he is SUPPOSED to be a jerk, but then he goes and does something so absolutely endearing, like playing "attack of the claw" with Skylar. That was totally autonomous and unplanned, but I couldn't not include it. It was just too adorable. And he likes to randomly show up at Bea's building just to drop by and say hello. And he always seems to be in the right place at the right time. And I think he's ridiculously handsome.
And now I'm not sure where I want to take my story. Damn you Brian for being so perfect!