2.75 – Preparation

Lyra shut her eyes tight and took a deep breath. It wasn’t that she didn’t trust her papa’s inventions, it was just…

…ok, maybe it was a bit. She’d seen the chaos that his malfunctioning SimRay had caused last year, so in all honesty she couldn’t be blamed for being a little cautious. It was four-thirty in the morning, she was wearing a suit that was completely alien to her (no pun intended) and she was about to step through an interplanetary portal.

She stepped forward, stifling a giggle as her foot passed through the surface. It felt like water – very dry, tickly water that hummed at her, like a pond filled with fluffy, waterproof bees. She shook her head. This was why she never woke up this early – things didn’t make sense until after eight.

The humming faded behind her and she opened her eyes.

02.75 SS01

Sixam was beautiful.

~~*~~

The girl was early. She’d done something bizarre to her uniform, but if that was the worst that could be said, things were going well.

“Miss Centauri. I am pleased to see that you followed my instructions.”

02.75 SS0202.75 SS03

“Welcome to Lifetree Academy.”

02.75 SS04

~~*~~

There was a school on that tree. There was a school. On. The. Tree.

“It is also underneath the tree.”

Lyra jumped. “How did you-”

“You do not have your shield up. Your thoughts are being projected.”

She quickly pulled her walls back up around her mind – she’d completely fallen out of the habit. With herself and Leo as the only telepaths left in the house, it hadn’t been high on her list of priorities. Here, everyone would be able to hear her.

“Is this better?”

“Yes. You will need to practice before the new term starts, but it is not a bad attempt.”

02.75 SS05

“You have six months before student registration. If you decide to apply, this will be your deadline.”

02.75 SS06

“Follow me.”

02.75 SS07

“Today is not a school day. It is easier to conduct tours when the building is clear. Please try not to step on the flowers. The Tree will get annoyed.”

02.75 SS08

“This is the classroom you will start in. It is for our youngest students, so we may have to find a larger desk for you.”

02.75 SS09

“I can sit on the floor. I don’t think there’s room for another desk.”

02.75 SS10

“Your classmates will be between five and ten years old. A lot of the work is self-scheduled, so you can work at your own pace. The teacher will assign you new projects once you have completed one.”

02.75 SS11

“This is the ‘Sim Studies’ classroom. Once you have completed your own studies, maybe you would like to assist here. It would be good to have first-hand knowledge.”

02.75 SS12

“This is our current project. We have nothing like these fireflies here, so we keep them in a secure environment to study them safely.”

02.75 SS13

“Are those real pastries?” “Unfortunately they are replicas. Earth ingredients are very scarce, though your father is working with our scientists to change that.”

02.75 SS14

“What are those glowing things on the ground?” “They are seeds. Eventually, we will move them and they will grow into new trees. It is part of the agreement.”

02.75 SS15

“Are you hungry?” “Umm…” “I am. Join me.”

02.75 SS16

“They’re like tiny strawberries!” “They are tiny strawberries. We’ve had limited success growing them.” “They taste exactly right, though.” “That is good to know. We must be going in the right direction.”

02.75 SS17

“Why is there so much water?” “The Tree needs to drink, and these rooms are surrounded by roots.”

02.75 SS18

“Our Post-graduate research facility. It took a lot of negotiating to clear this room of flowers.” “The Tree?” “The Tree.” “Is that a man in that tank?” “He volunteered. It is only for a few months, and his team is learning a lot from him.” “I’m glad he’s wearing pants.” “…so is he, I am sure.”

02.75 SS19

“Do not stand on the cloning device. We are having… issues.”

~~*~~

“Now we move onto the upper floors.”

Lyra followed, trying to take everything in. Her face might be composed, but the mouth in her mind had been wide open in a very undignified way since the tour had begun. It was a complete shock to her system to see something familiar in such a strange place.

“Ellie?”

02.75 SS20

“Ly? What are you doing here? Where’s your hair? Where did you get that outfit?”

“Umm… school, I cut it off, and I made it. What are you doing here?”

“Work.”

“Ah, Ella. It has been a while. Tell me, what exactly is your job again?” Lyra turned. It wasn’t easy to tell with the language switch, but the headmistress sounded amused.

I will translate for you today. Next time we meet, you will have to rely on yourself.

She was talking out loud and telepathically at once. It wasn’t even the same words! Would she be able to do that one day?

“I am a finder of things.”

“And where do you find them?”

“Places,” Ellie said, with a perfectly straight face. “Lots of places.”

“And how do you find them?”

“Magic?”

02.75 SS21

“Ellie, are you a-“

02.75 SS22

“Don’t tell the dads, ok?”

 

02.75 SS23

~~*~~

“This is the library. I will find the books you need. Please do not move anything – you will not be able to put it back.”

Why did she speak so formally all the time? Was it a language issue, or was it the same in Sixan? One day she’d know the answer. She smiled to herself. Apparently she’d made up her mind without realising. It wasn’t an ‘if’ or a ‘maybe’ anymore. She would study here, she would learn, and she would understand.

02.75 SS24

“Sit down, please.”

02.75 SS25

“What is this thing?”

02.75 SS26

“What is what?”

02.75 SS27

“Ah. That is our solar system.” “It’s beautiful.”

02.75 SS28

“You will be able to access this program from home. It will help you with your studies.”

“You will study our language every day. If you do not have a basic understanding by the time you come back, you will not be able to register. I do not ask you to be fluent, but you must have enough knowledge to understand your teacher. He will help, but he can not do the work for you.”

“Yes, headmistress.”

“I have one last task for you. Follow me.”

02.75 SS29

“This tree is common on our planet. It grows everywhere, whether it is wanted or not. Look closely.”

Lyra moved forward, gazing at the tree. Its branches were more like tentacles, really. They moved fluidly, the flowers seeming to stare at her. The centre point followed her movements. “I think we have one of these at home. Ellie brought it back.”

“That would not surprise me, given your sister’s ability to move things without being noticed. Do you see how the corolla watches you?”

“The bit in the middle?”

“Yes. It is protecting some of the smaller blossoms. I would like you to pick of the blooms it is guarding. Be careful.”

She reached out, and the tree leant back.

“It is alive. Try another tactic.”

She tried to sneak up on it, but the eyes were everywhere. She tried to distract it with loud noises (Miss Centauri, please warn me if you are planning to do that again so I can turn off my aid) and she even tried camoflage.

“They can read heat levels. You are warmer than the air around you. Now, think. What haven’t you tried.”

Lyra sat down on the ground, looking up at the tree. What hadn’t she tried? She just wanted a flower. It wasn’t her fault the silly thing was so protecti-

Protective. It was alive.

“How can I say ‘May I have a flower, please” in Sixan?”

The older woman smiled.

~~*~~

I want you to grow this flower. If you can keep the tree that it will become alive and content, then you will have learnt your first lesson.

To say she was nervous would be an understatement. She didn’t have green fingers, she had plant-killing hands. She was surprised the flower had only bitten her twice before she’d managed to pluck it. It turned out that permission from the tree did not necessarily mean obedience from the flower.

02.75 SS30

She was tired, bleeding and overwhelmed, but today had been a good day.

 

~~*~~

“Shhhh, Issy. There’s a good girl. See? Eating’s much easier when you aren’t crying, isn’t it?”

02.75 SS31

Meet Isabelle!

“Waaaahhhhhhhhhh!”

“Yari…”

Al could hear his wife giggling in the kitchen. “Not going to feed me?”

02.75 SS32

“This smells amazing, by the way.”

“If it means no more fake crying. They’re both asleep, lets not wake them,” he said, kissing her on the forehead. “How’s your tummy?”

“A bit better now. Morning sickness sucks.”

“I can make you something else if it’ll help.”

“No, the fruit should be ok.” She opened her mouth and pointed to the fork. “Feed me.”

Al sighed, smiling as he picked it up. He speared a piece of apple and held it up to her mouth. “You’re staying home today, right?”

“Yuh-huh. I’ve got to write up this column. What do you think I should do, though? I can’t just say ‘The food was excellent, I’m sorry I threw it up,” can I?”

“How about sticking to what you thought before that happened. Was it a nice place?”

“Really nice. It took a while for the food to arrive, but it was good stuff.”

“Well then, how about that? I’ll keep an eye on the babes. You might want to get dressed, though – Shea will be here in an hour or so. I’m not sure if Ly will be with her, apparently she vanished this morning.”

“I didn’t know she could turn invisible.”

“She can’t.”

“Oh, good. I was worried it was genetic. Could you imagine how hard it would be to look after the girls if we couldn’t see them?”

02.75 SS33

This is Ximena. She’s a lot quieter than her sister.

~~*~~

“What are you painting?”

“Do you remember the story you told me about the sea snake that lived near your house?”

“Gertie?”

“Yeah. I’m painting her.”

 

02.75 SS35

“I love you.” “I love you, too.”

02.75 SS36

“Well, time to get working.”

02.75 SS37

Look who’s here!

02.75 SS38

Small room, many people, very cute babies.

~~*~~

“I can’t believe you’re pregnant again.”

02.75 SS39

“I know! Isn’t it wonderful?”

02.75 SS40

“This way when the kids grow up they’ll be close enough in age to play together.”

02.75 SS41

We’ll show them all the fun games, won’t we, Kitty?

02.75 SS42

“Al said you disappeared today. Did you lose your clothes while you were gone? I haven’t seen those before.”

02.75 SS43

“Actually, I decided it was time for a change.”

02.75 SS44

“Change is good! Especially when it’s colourful.”

02.75 SS45

“You like it? If you want, I can try to make something similar for the babies when they’re a bit older.”

02.75 SS46

“Can I have one? I’d like to glow.” “Of course, Yari. You can come over and design it with me, ok?”

Yaritza was truly happy. She had two beautiful baby girls, with another child on the way. She had a husband who loved her, and who she loved back. She had a bigger family than she had ever thought possible, and a job she enjoyed.

02.75 SS4702.75 SS48

Life was wonderful. Not even morning sickness could take that away.

02.75 SS49


 

A/N I’m getting all emotional. We have one more chapter before the switch. Don’t worry, we’ll still see lots of Lor and Malik and Steve, as well as the other kids of this Generation. I love them all too much to leave them, but Lyra will be taking over officially very soon.

I built the school, and I’m so SO proud of it. I’ll be putting it up on the gallery later today and making a big tour post for it after that, so look for that over the next day or so πŸ™‚

EDIT: Here‘s the gallery link! In the one I use in the story I use CC water for the pools, but in the uploaded version there is no CC at all πŸ™‚

P.S. Ellie is a Space Pirate. (Well, an aspiring Interstellar Smuggler, but it counts =p She got her childhood dream!)

9 thoughts on “2.75 – Preparation

  1. Awww. My fav couple and their twins with another on the way. ❀️❀️

    Lyra is awesome. The school is great too. She’s going to shake up Sixam! Starting with the red outfit! Love it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m so happy you liked the outfit! It’s one of the swatches of some CC I’m making πŸ˜€ I’m really happy with how it turned out!

      Married life really suits Al and Yari πŸ™‚ Yari’s a little difficult to keep track of with her ‘childish’ and ‘insane’ traits, but they love each other to bits. And they have adorable kiddies!

      Like

  2. Sixam is such a beautiful place! I love the world you created, and the school is breathtakingly gorgeous. It’s so fun to see your backstory for the planet told to us through snippets of conversation and through the screenshots. πŸ™‚ I like that they’re trying to learn more about Sims and to cultivate their plants in return. Awareness of both cultures in both planets is so important! Lyra’s definitely going to be a huge asset in that regard. I also really like the flower lesson! It really says a lot about a person’s ability to interact with other living things. πŸ™‚

    *waves at Ellie happily* πŸ˜€

    Awww it’s so good to see how Al and Yari are doing! The twins are beautiful, and it’s so nice to see Yari so happy. ❀ Hugs to all of them and I hope the rest of the pregnancy goes well! Can't wait to see what they'll be having.

    Liked by 1 person

    • THAT SCHOOL TOOK SO LONG TO BUILD but I love it to bits πŸ™‚ It’s a mix of technology and nature in symbiosis!
      Lyra’s trial is hopefully the early stage of a cultural exchange, yes πŸ™‚ Lor has been working with other scientists to try to get earth plants growing on Sixam since Ellie set up that portal – even hidden progress is good πŸ™‚ Eventually, maybe there will be student exchanges, sharing resources and a better understanding all around! I hope so. And I’m so glad you liked the flower lesson πŸ™‚

      Ellie is a Space Pirate – I’m so proud of her.

      Al and Yari are doing wonderfully together. They love eachother, they love their kids, Yari didn’t end up in a boring office job like she feared – it’s all working out for them πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      • You did so well! It’s a lot to be proud of for sure! ❀

        Ah I'm super excited to see networks being established and bonds being formed between Sims and Sixans! πŸ˜€ It won't happen overnight, but it's a great stepping stone forward as it is! πŸ™‚

        As am I! Suits her well. πŸ™‚

        I'm so glad that they're both so happy! And yay for Yari being able to work from home and have such an exciting job! Mmm, food columns. πŸ˜€ She'll balance motherhood and her career wonderfully, I'm sure.

        Liked by 1 person

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