Chapter 2.8: A blooming relationship

Screenshot-449“You have to be more careful!” Mithos’ voice was filled with worry and care but I had heard the words too many times for them to actually mean anything. Besides, he had been the one to inspire me in to this fight in the first place. I knew he was proud behind the worrying facade.

“I am careful!” I protested and Mithos smiled and pulled me closer to ruffle my hair, like he had done when I was just a little kid.

“I know you are, champ.”

Screenshot-447“Although…” I started a bit more quiet once he had let me go. “If it weren’t for Oceana they would have beat me up quite bad, I think.”

“She’s a good girl” Mithos agreed and another smile spread in his face. I loved it when he smiled, he was one of my best friends and I treasured every lonely minute I got with him. Unfortunately, they weren’t very common. It seemed like everyone wanted a piece of him. I was happy for what he could spare, though.

Screenshot-446“She said they weren’t allowed to hurt her friends… What does it mean?” I wondered and scratched my head. That part of the evening had confused me ever since it happened. Both because of the word friends, and because she could forbid the antagonists to do anything. What gave her that power?

“Oh, that…” Mithos paused for a second. “You’d be surprised if you knew everything about her background. I mean, I probably don’t know it all, and I’m surprised. She has to be about the strongest girl in Fondant Fields. Don’t tell Sweet Corn I said so, though.”

We both laughed at that last sentence. Sweets wouldn’t be happy to know we considered someone else to be the strongest girl in town. She desperately craved that title for herself, and in all honesty, she was most likely a good competitor.

Screenshot-448“Background?” I was intrigued.

“I’m not the one to tell her your story. You’ll have to ask her yourself.” Mithos shielded himself and I decided to let it be. If Oceana wanted to me know, she would tell me. Mithos grinned, “You’re quite in to her, aren’t you?”

I felt my cheeks turn red. “I don’t know… She’s fun and I like being with her.”

“Oh big surprise!” Mithos teased. “You’ve practically been inseparable since that night!”

Screenshot-427He was right, I had been hanging out with Oceana a lot since she saved me from being beaten up by Oil and Flirt. She was fun to hang out with and she made me do things I never would have done with anyone else by my side. I don’t know exactly what it was, but for some reason I actually enjoyed socializing for my own sake, and not just for acting normal.

There was just something special about Oceana that managed to pull me out from some kind of shell. Maybe it was the fact that I didn’t owe her anything. I could be with her because I actually wanted to without the pressure to make up for anything. I had never really understood that such was the case until she came in to my life, but it was absolutely true: I had to make up for putting my family in District 0. Mithos and Thunderbird had lost their best friend because of me. Cinnamon recklessly threw herself in to an investigation which was needed because of an event that I had caused. They all deserved my company and protection and if anything was ever to happen to them, I would be there to take the blame.

Screenshot-423But Oceana on the other hand, she had come to my rescue because she actually wanted to and none of my earlier actions had forced neither me or her in to the relation. She was the first friend I had actually chosen, and the first who had chosen me.

“Sunny, you have to sing Endless Love with me tonight!” Oceana laughed and I was smitten. We had sung that very song numerous times. It was her favourite song and she forced me to put on my most loveable face every time because we needed to put on a show, as she liked to put it.

Screenshot-430She was quite the performer, while I was… not. I tried my best, though, because even if I didn’t have the best singing voice or the best performance skills, it was fun. Oceana looked me deep in to the eyes and flapped her eyelashes while singing a set of perfect tunes:

“Oh, love
I’ll be a fool
For you,
I’m sure
You know I don’t mind
Oh, you know I don’t mind”

Screenshot-429We finished the song and stroke a perfect finishing pose and our friends in the pub clapped their hands like crazy. I actually enjoyed being the center of attention, which was probably weird both for me and everyone else who knew me from before.

Screenshot-441“Cheers for my duet partner!” Oceana exclaimed later and slammed her glass in to mine with such force that I thought the glasses would break.

“Cheers for friendship” I said and swept the drink in my glass.

Screenshot-442The drink warmed my body from within. It tasted good, too. Quince was getting better and better behind the bar and I knew he could pretty much perform magical things with the drinks he mixed. I never thought he would use that kind of magic on me, though.

But, there’s no other explanation to why I would ask Oceana to dance with me. Slow-dance. Unfortunately, she said yes.

Screenshot-435 Screenshot-437 I say unfortunately, but I didn’t mean it.

I liked dancing with Oceana and I didn’t care that people stared at us or that we were the only ones on the dancefloor. All I could think of was that she was cute, and that she smelled nice. And that she had a nice smile. And that her eyes sparkled like emerald. And that her lips looked like they would taste like raspberries.

Screenshot-438I was no longer in control of my own body and feelings and I was getting certain that Quince was behind it. He had certainly worked some kind of mixologist magic on me. I was empowered.

Screenshot-454I wasn’t even ashamed when I leaned in and placed my lips on Oceana’s sweet pink ones. They didn’t taste like raspberries, they tasted much, much better. I can’t even find a word for it. The pub exploded in cheers and applauds again and it was probably the finishing pose they had all waited for after the duet. I liked it.


Chapter 2.7: A Savior

Happy Holidays everyone!

I’ve been visiting my family for Christmas and now I’m back home. My fiance gifted me Seasons and I absolutely love it so far. I’ve changed my default eyes in this chapter and therefore the sims will all have new eyes somewhere in the middle of the chapter. I hope you don’t mind too much. 🙂

Screenshot-279It was a regular night at the pub. I honestly don’t know why I kept going there, since I much preferred the loneliness in the district. I guess it must have been some kind of quest to seem normal and social. I didn’t convince myself very well, but my friends seemed convinced and that was what really mattered.

“Who’s that?” I asked my brother and pointed towards a teal lady standing next to Bluebell at the bar. They didn’t seem to talk to each other, but I figured Quince should know who she was anyway, since he worked here. He knew pretty much everyone who came here. I don’t know why she caught my eye, but I knew I had never seen her here before.

“Why you ask?” he teased and hit me jokingly in the side. “She’s quite cute, isn’t she?”

Screenshot-283I felt how I blushed and I nodded. “I suppose.”

“That’s Oceana, let’s go over there.” He started walking towards the bar and my curiosity got hold on me and I followed him. He stopped a couple of steps before the girls and I stopped next to him.

Screenshot-284Screenshot-286Sometimes, my brother is a jerk and he finds joy in doing immature things. It shouldn’t really had come as a surprise when he pushed me so that I fell straight in to Oceana. I blushed and looked up at her. “Sorry” I mumbled and looked around to give Quince a killing look. He just smiled victoriously.

“That’s okay” Oceana smiled at me for a brief moment before turning around towards the bar again.

Not knowing what to do, I went back over to my brother. “Why did you do that?” I hissed.

Screenshot-282“Relax, Sunny. She’s kind and cute and you like her. It’s no big deal.”

“To me it is” I pouted. “That’s not how I do things.”

Screenshot-288Both Quince and Bluebell laughed at me because I got annoyed, which annoyed me even more, even though I knew they did it with love, and not to be mean. It was just that sometimes it felt like no-one actually took me seriously. And that annoyed me to no end. I never really got over it that night, and in the end I decided to just go home. It wasn’t fun to hang out with your friends when all they did was make fun of you.

Screenshot-289The next day I met up with Cinnamon. We had kept following the Sourz cousins around town, mapping out their affairs and whereabouts. The more we investigated, the more we learned that they were indeed two shady berries. Their facade was spotless and perfect, but we quickly realized that they were a lot dirtier beneath the surface and we wanted to make sure it got public. It just wasn’t right that two of the town’s most powerful ‘bows could get away with being such berryholes.

Screenshot-407What they did, could most fittingly be described as organized crime. They had younger colorful ‘bows running dirty errands for them, who they seemed to pay with cash in alleys and places far from the city’s more populated areas. They snuck in to warehouses in the old harbor and exited minutes later one by one. They visited pubs and shops which mystically burnt to the ground just days later. People they had been in touch with got hurt. The list could go on forever. But as stated, it can be summarized with the words shady, evil and criminal.

Many of the happenings were investigated by the police but the evidence never led towards the cousins. There was always someone younger, less valuable berry to take the blame and we soon realized that Tiber and Heliotrope were the top of what could be described as a pyramide. Getting to them would be both risky and hard, but we were determined to succeed.

Screenshot-404Our snooping didn’t go by unnoticed and more than once someone saw us and decided to give us a lesson. Physical lesson, I mean. We got attacked (or warned, as they preferred to put it) now and then, and I came home with bruises, scratches and bloody wounds which had mom and dad wonder about my business. They understood, though, and even though I got hurt, they never tried to make me stop. We all knew it was for a good cause, and it would take more than a few bruises or blood to make me stop.

I can’t say I was the pushy one and without Cinnamon by my side, I probably would have given up a long time ago. But not only was she an inspirational source, she was also a skilled detective and she surprised me time after time with finding new clues and leads. Her blog grew for every new entry she posted and as it did, so did the support for colorless’ rights.

Screenshot-405It was a warm summer day when we had managed to find out that one of their shady deals would take place at the junkyard. We were safely hidden behind a worn-out drawer and waited for something to happen. I don’t exactly know what we had to expect, but we knew something was up and we would make sure to document it all.

When a young boy, about 14 years old, knocked on the door while keeping a constant lookout we both knew this was it. The cousins came out of the little office and took a quick look around before whispering something in the boy’s ear. He shook his head as a response and even from my distance I could see how a confident smile grew on Tiber’s face. The boy handed the Sourz cousins a brown paper bag and in exchange he received a pile of money. Once the exchange had been made, Tiber and Heliotrope hurried away and the boy was standing still, looking nervous and he kept looking at his watch. It was as though he was waiting for something.

Screenshot-411“Let’s go talk to him” Cinnamon whispered and blew our cover by standing up and starting to approach the boy. Fear gripped me, and I followed my friend. I wouldn’t let her get hurt.

“Hey” she said with her ordinary confident and happy voice and the boy looked even more nervous and he started tapping his fingers rythmically against his left arm. “Do you know when the Sourz will be back? I have something for them” Cinnamon continued.

Screenshot-409“You work for them?” the boy asked surprised and immediately bit his lip afterwards. “I mean, no. I don’t know. I’m just here to… Uhm, throw some stuff.”

Screenshot-408“Oh, I just thought you were, you know. With them.” Cinnamon kept going and I was perplex, I didn’t know how she could be so calm while lying straight in to the poor boy’s eyes.

The boy shook his head and panic showed in his face. “I don’t know” he stammered and pushed his way passed us to leave. As he did, I pulled the camera out of my pocket and shot a picture of his angry, nervous face. We always wanted to have pictures to go along with the blog posts because it added a bigger sense of truth.

I turned around and watched him leave. “We know about the money!” I called after him. Cinnamon shot me a deadly stare and I realized it had probably been a bad move, but I just couldn’t let crime pass right before my eyes like that.

We parted ways shortly after, because Cinnamon wanted to get home and finish the blog post about what had just happened. She took the camera with her, so that she would be able to post both text and pictures straight away. We knew that the young boy had most likely robbed one of the stores in town and the bag he handed the Sourz contained either clothes, shoes, electronics or something else that the cousins wanted to sell. Judging by how big the pile of money had been, I figured it was something with a decent value.

Screenshot-413On my way home, I passed Fondant Gardens and right before the main entrance, I heard the young boy’s voice. “Thay have my fudging picture and they know! Fudge, fudge, FUDGE, this is bad!” he said.

I peaked around the corner and saw the boy from earlier along with another, pink, boy. The pink boy was standing with his face turned to the entrance and by the look in his eyes, I understood that he had seen me. “Did you say he was white with yellow hair?” he wondered, without leaving me with his eyes. The blue boy clenched his fists and nodded.

Screenshot-414“Is it him?” The pink boy was pointing straight at me and as soon as the blue boy had turned around and laid his eyes on me, he started moving towards me. “Yes, it’s him!”


Within an instant they were both standing right before me and the blue boy kept clenching his fists while the pink boy cursed unstoppable. It was words I was used to; Brainless white, Vanilla, Freak. In a way, it was surprising that they still hurt, after all this time.

Screenshot-416I tried to stand up for myself. After all, I had learned some things by hanging out with my siblings, Cinnamon and Mithos. And of course, my parents would never forgive me if I didn’t try to defend myself.

Screenshot-417“Take his camera, Flirt” the blue boy shouted and his palm hit my cheek so fast that there was no time for me to react. The pink boy jumped on me and I fell to the ground. The blue boy followed and even though I was bigger, there was no way I could defend myself against the two teenage boys’ fists and punches. I felt like a sack of sand and while they beat me, they kept throwing warnings after me. Warnings that I had heard several times before.

“Oil Fir and Flirt Branch!” A girl’s voice suddenly pierced through the night and the two boys stopped themselves.

Screenshot-415I brushed the dirt off my clothes and stood up again. The girl moved closer to us and she looked furious. I recognized her from the Blank Slate, she was the one who Quince had pushed me in to. “What the fudge are you doing?! Two against one, huh?”

“But we… He has pictures” the blue boy, who was apparently named Oil, begun, but was soon interrupted by Oceana again. “I don’t care. He’s my friend, and you’re not allowed to hurt my friends!”

“We didn’t know” Flirt mumbled and the two of them ran away, like scared mice. I could barely believe my eyes.

Screenshot-420“Look, I’m sorry about that” said Oceana and waved her hands in front of her. “They know they can’t hurt my friends, but sometimes they just… Well, sorry. I don’t think it’ll happen again.”

Friends? For whatever reason, there was a swarm of butterflies in my stomach. “It’s worth it” I heard myself saying. “It always is. It serves its cause. There’ll be a change, eventually.”

“I know” Oceana sighed. “But it’s not right that you should get hurt in the meantime.”

Screenshot-421She raised her hand and for a moment I was sure she would hit me. I mean, even though our support grew, it was still more common to feel disgust by colorless. But Oceana didn’t hit me, she traced her fingers slow and soft against my cheek. “You look awful” she said and wiped the blood of my face.

I practically floated back to the district that night.

Oceana is made by the very talented smurfilssimblr and Heliotrope is created by westrangers.

Chapter 2.6: Punishment

It was an uplifting feeling knowing we had circled in who the killers were. Now the next step was thrilling, dangerous and scary: Make them pay for what they had done. It wasn’t easy figuring a fitting punishment out, mostly because they had way more power than we could ever dream of. And because they were older, bigger, stronger and more dangerous.

Screenshot-251Sweets, who had refused to work with Cinnamon earlier, changed her mind when it came to this step. I guess it was just too exciting for her to stay out of. She was also the one who came up with the most ideas. The majority of them were stupid and too dangerous but eventually we decided on starting out by letting them know that we knew what they had done. It was a good thing they were members of the Sourz family, because all the cousins stayed under the same roof and we could easily just put a letter in their mailbox, stating we knew.

Now, we must remember Sweet Corn was with us, and therefore a simple letter wasn’t enough. She somehow convinced us that we also needed to make them suffer, so she brought eggs which we would toss at their house and then run away. So, the plan was: A letter on the porch and eggs thrown at the facade.

Screenshot-248Once we had planted the letter on the porch, Sweet Corn threw the first few eggs while I kept guard. I didn’t exactly like this part of the idea, but the two girls had convinced me it would be fun and that the Sourz deserved it. And what could I do then, other than tag along? After all, I had promised Quince we would make them pay for what they had done. And I wasn’t going to break that promise.

For every egg that splashed against the house I jumped a little out of fear for getting caught. My head was going from right to left in a rapid speed and my heart was beating so loud in my chest that I was sure both Sweets, Cinnamon and the Sourz family could hear it. Ba-dum. Ba-dum. Ba-dum.

Screenshot-249“This is fun!” Sweet Corn exclaimed delighted and was supported by Cinnamon, who clapped her hands in pure joy. The sight of the two girls enjoying themselves and looking so carefree made me relax a bit. After all, several eggs had been thrown already and none had come to interrupt us.

“Sunny, try it! It’s fun” Sweets cried and tossed an egg to me. I caught it and turned it in my hands, examining it. ‘One egg won’t hurt’ I thought to myself and raised my arm to throw it away. Sweet Corn turned around and smiled widely at me and Cinnamon paused her own egging and looked at me. I felt empowered by their attention and my arm moved by itself, followed by my fingers letting go of the egg in my hand. SPLASH!

Screenshot-250There was a strange rush in my body by the sight of the mess the egg made and a wide smile broke loose in my face. I bent down to pick another egg up and got ready to throw it too when I was interrupted by Sweet Corn, who dropped an egg by her feet and cursed, “Oh fudge.”

Both her and Cinnamon turned on their heels and started running away and as Sweets passed me she tugged at my arm and hissed, “Run!”

Screenshot-252Before I knew it, the front door was slammed open and a teal berry with fire in his eyes stared at me. I recognized him immediately, it was Tiber. I found myself frozen at the spot and Tiber moved closer and closer. It can’t have been more than a few seconds that passed, but it felt like an eternity before he was standing right before me.

Screenshot-253With a rough push I fell backwards and in to the shrubs behind me. The branches scratched my arms and legs but I couldn’t feel any pain through all of the fear rushing through my body. I swear I saw my life pass before my eyes as I laid there in the shrubs with scratches bleeding on my arms. A long string of expletives came out of Tiber’s mouth and he walked towards me again and pulled me up by the collar of my shirt. I think I cried while he locked his eyes to me and threatened me, “If I ever see you again I swear I won’t go easy on you. Now scram, you little piece of colorless dirt.”

He didn’t need to tell me twice and as soon as he let me go I ran.

I ran until Cinnamon stopped me, she told me to come with her while she gave him what he deserved. My whole body complained over having to go back from what I was running from, but Cinnamon had a firm grip around my arm and practically dragged me along.

Screenshot-257She placed me on a safe distance from the house and then went up and pushed the door bell. Tiber opened and his eyes were still burning with fury.

Screenshot-254“Here’s for being such a berryhole!” Cinnamon yelled and hit him straight in the face. He must have been so surprised that the little girl in front of him could manage such strength because he didn’t do anything to her. He just moved his hand up the cheek where Cinnamon’s fist had landed and rubbed it gently. Cinnamon finished it off by spitting on his porch and then walked off with her head held high. I could barely believe what had just happened, but I was glad that I had believed in the good of her. Where the cocky Sweet Corn was, I had no idea.

Screenshot-232We all agreed on being more careful after that, so instead of trying to physically hurt them, we published the article about their past in a blog Cinnamon started up. She also wrote an entry about the murder of Affair, where she interviewed Quince. The names of the Sourz twins, Tiber and Heliotrope, were published in that article. We never thought it would actually be read by very many, since historically there had been little interest in anything produced by colorless supporters.

It was a big surprise when Sugar Valley Times contacted Cinnamon, saying they wanted to write about the story she had published. To say the least, we were shocked, but thrilled. Cinnamon was interviewed and she told the reporter everything she knew for sure, as well as things she suspected or things that had been hidden from the public for many, many years. She talked about District 0 and how Fondant Fields segregated colorless berries from colorful and how mistreatment had escalated throughout the years. Her conclusion that the mistreatment had lead to the unsolved murder of Affair was what the reporter in the end pushed for. It lead to an article pointing out Tiber and Helirtrope as murderers, and it questioned the endless racism plaguing Fondant Fields (and many other berry towns). In the end, Sugar Valley Times demanded a change, they demanded a stop to the racism and they begged for better living conditions for colorless.

It stirred up a new uprising and for days after the television news reported of new protests in towns we never even heard of. Colorful berries gathered outside their respective Town Halls and demanded change, and an arrest in the murder of Affair. Even in Fondant Fields the amount of supporters shot high and we noticed it both because of protests outside the Town Hall, and because The Blank Slate got busier and busier. Unfortunately, it never resulted in an arrest, because the police lacked real evidence. Apparently, Quince’s identification wasn’t enough.

No matter, it was a joy to see. One day the protests outside our own Town Hall were broadcasted on national TV and we all laughed when we saw Mayor Bloom hurry out with guards around him through the crowds. It seemed like murder was actually too much for the general berry to accept and that us finding the killers heated up a discussion that had been boiling under the surface for decades. Maybe this would be the turning point?

Screenshot-261 Screenshot-262The Blank Slate was busier than ever and even I, who preferred the loneliness and quiet times couldn’t reject the happy feelings it brought. On the night of our birthday and it was one of the busiest nights at the pub since our last birthday. It was a long time since we felt so happy and positive about the future. Even Flax came to celebrate with us, he had been quite invisible since the last few election losses. I think these new events might be just what was needed for him to actually win.

Screenshot-260My entrance into young adulthood was filled by a sense of hope, joy and optimism.

Chapter 2.5: Sourz

Screenshot-211“No way I’m coming with you to hang out with that berryhole!” Sweet Corn yelled at me. She was clearly not happy with the cooperation I had started with Cinnamon. She even called me a traitor when I told her about it. In my head, that accusation didn’t make any sense. How could one be a traitor if they worked for the same goal?

“Fine, I’ll go on my own then” I ended the conversation by walking out of the room and towards the library where I would meet up with Cinnamon. Sometimes I didn’t get my sister, and the fact that we were twins was unbelievable sometimes.

Screenshot-228“You’re late” Cinnamon stated and looked at her watch when I approached the stairs up to the library where she was waiting for me. I looked at my own watch, it was 10.02 which meant I was two minutes late. I shrugged and walked past her in to the library. It seemed like the little healing our relation had got the other day wasn’t enough for her to trust me completely. We would have to work on that.

Screenshot-233Cinnamon took place in front of one of the computers and looked around before hastily typing something in to the browser. She ended up on a plain blue page with a search box in the middle. In the search box she typed Sourz and hit enter. After a moment of loading time, a list of articles appeared on the screen. “This is all the articles published about that family during the last two years” Cinnamon explained and scrolled through the links without clicking on a single one.

Screenshot-232“Hm, doesn’t seem to contain anything out of the ordinary” she mumbled and kept scrolling. “Sourz open a new gallery. Sourz new hospital for children.” She kept reading some of what I suspected were headlines while scrolling. Within no time she had come to the bottom of the page.

“Nothing?” I wondered, still not quite understanding what she was doing, or what she was looking for.

Screenshot-231“I’ll have to go further back” she replied and went back to the first page where she clicked a few boxes, that I hadn’t noticed earlier, and hit Enter once again.

A new list of articles appeared and I stepped closer to the screen to help her read them as she scrolled. Most of them were about donations made by the family, or companies started by them. It was clear that they had a good reputation in town and that they had a lot of power. I was starting to think this wouldn’t lead anywhere when another headline caught my eye. “Wait, stop there!” I shouted and pointed at the screen. Cinnamon looked around worried, but it seemed like no one cared about my little outburst.

“Sourz cousins in trouble” I read out loud and Cinnamon’s eyes grew wide in shock as she clicked on the link. It took us to a newspaper based in Briocheport and the article reported how the Sourz cousins Tiber and Heliotrope had been in a brawl at one of the more fancy clubs in Briocheport. The brawl escalated and in the end Tiber had pulled a gun to threaten the guy who they had fought with. The whole story ended with a fired gun and a ‘bow with a shot damaged leg.

Screenshot-234This. Is. Unbelievable” Cinnamon gasped and looked at me. “Do you realize what this means?”

“That they’re capable of such heavy crimes?” I guessed and Cinnamon nodded eagerly.

“I’ll print this and we’ll show your brother those pictures used in the article” she continued and almost jumped out of the chair out of excitement.

Screenshot-237After that breakthrough, we parted ways. There is only so much time you can spend with someone you don’t actually trust before you need to be on your own. I think Cinnamon still found it hard to accept that me and Sweets had been the ones to suspect the Sourz at first. And by now, it certainly seemed possible that they could be guilty. With the newly acquired pictures with me, I decided to head straight to The Blank Slate and talk to Quince. That was the natural next step and depending on what he said, we could either have reached the turning point, or we could be back at square one. It made me feel quite nervous.

“Sup bro?” Quince smiled and waved across the room as I entered the pub. “Where’s Sweets? It’s not common to see you here without her.”

“Uhm, we had a little fight this morning. Nothing major. Look, I need to talk to you…” He moved over to the side of the bar where I lowered my voice to talk to him, “I think we found something.”

Screenshot-238“Really?” His face lit up in a smile, but there was a sadness behind it. The sadness that had plagued him ever since he lost his best friend, if we had made progress in the case it would possibly make him feel a bit better.

“Look” I handed him the article and the printed pictures and watched him examine it.Once he was done he looked up with tearful eyes:

Screenshot-235“This is them. Sunny, these are the guys who killed Affair. I can’t believe you did it Sunny! Oh how they are gonna pay!” He wiped tears out of his eyes with the back of his hand, excused himself to Mithos and pulled me outside.

Screenshot-240The september air was cool and the skin on my arms grumbled. I shivered and was surprised to see that Quince seemed indifferent to the cold. “How did you find them?” he wondered and looked at me with the same sad eyes as before.

“We just thought it would make sense if it were them. With their history and all… And Cinnamon found the article. I think she’s a hacker or something…”

“I’ll take it from here. I need to avenge Affair on my own” Quince’s voice was firm and hard and it almost looked like he was boiling on the inside. I had never seen my brother look so angry and hurt. I was suddenly struck by fear that he would do something very, very stupid.

Screenshot-244“No” I said calm. “You’re not going to let them hurt you that easy Quincie. I started this, and I’ll finish it. Along with Cinnamon and Sweets. You should focus on the pub. I promise, we’ll take care of this.”

He seemed surprised by the strength in my tone, and to be fair I was surprised myself. I don’t know where I found the courage, but I just knew I wouldn’t let my brother get hurt. After all, I was the one who got us all in to this mess, it was only fair that I was also the one to get us out of it.

“But… What makes you think I would put you in such danger?” Quince was grasping for a straw, something to hold on to. Something to make me change my mind, but I was determined enough to not cave for his tries. Besides…

Screenshot-245“You’re going to be a father, Quince! And I’m not letting that little kiddo grow up without a father. And you’re not going to risk that either. It wouldn’t be fair against Bluebell or that little one.”

Quince lowered his head, I had most definitely hit his weak point. “At least promise to be careful, okay?”

Chapter 2.4: Researchs

Screenshot-227I did start my own researchs. Or rather, we started our own researchs. There was no way I could do it without Sweets, not because I desperately craved her help, but because she wouldn’t let me do something that exciting on my own.

The first few steps were easy as we were in the “inner circle” where the murder had taken place. Quince told us it was two men who killed Affair. He didn’t exactly know who they were, but he knew that one of them was a teal berry and the other one was purple. He also thought that they were no more than a couple of years older than him. Those few steps had been easy, as had it been to question the berries we knew had been at The Blank Slate at the time. The thing was that those steps didn’t provide any more information than what Quince could give us.

So, after just a day, we were stuck. We didn’t know how to continue, especially not since the actual murder had taken place many years ago and every potential trace that could have been left on the crime scene was since long gone. We didn’t exactly work in a professional way, but we did what we could by mapping out all purple and teal male ‘bows in Fondant Fields. There were more than you would imagine, but still an amount that was actually possible to investigate within a decent amount of time.

Screenshot-218The first approach was actually Sweet Corn’s idea. She wanted to see if any of them were real antagonists so she simply walked up to a few of them, trying to make conversation. Unfortunately for us, most berries were still having racist thoughts so we couldn’t exclude more than a few ‘bows that way. In our world, a ‘bow who cared top help us couldn’t be guilty of that one aweful crime.

After two weeks of investigating we had a list with names on potential offenders. It consisted of 12 names, mixed between purple and teal berries. Some of them were known to us, especially to mention the Sourz family, where two of the cousins were exactly teal and purple. Even though we tried not to, I must say they ended up on the top of our suspected list. The Sourz were known for being madly color racists and every kid born in that house was fueled the same thoughts with the breast milk. It was safe to say, they really hated us.

As if the family’s long-term political views wasn’t enough, they were also one of the most influental families in Fondant Fields. If they wished to keep the police of their back, all they had to do was say so. Their money pretty much ruled this town. Besides, momma Sourz was the secretary of Mayor Bloom. They were a powerful, rich and pure racist family, from who nothing good could come.

Screenshot-216“Why don’t we just ask them?” Sweets said and sighed. Being stuck didn’t suit her person, she demanded action of life and she must have gone in to this whole thing thinking it would be an endless adventure of excitement and suspense.

Screenshot-215“Because they won’t tell you the truth. They’re actually more likely to hurt you if you accuse them” I explained, as calm as always when it came to my sister. As much as I loved her, there were times when she really got on my nerves with her restlessness.

“Then what do we do?!”

Screenshot-213“We wait, observe. Map out what happened, where people went after the shooting. We talk to the police, try to figure why they never cared.”

Screenshot-217“Sounds boring!”

“Ye, but that’s because it’s smart.”

But Sweets was right, it was boring. We followed teal and purple berries around for a few days, without quite knowing what we were looking for. They went to work, shopping, fishing, partying just like any ordinary ‘bow. None of them really seemed to be potential killers. But then, two of them probably was and we never really observed any interaction between any of them and colorless ‘bows. Not other than when Sweets was asking for made up directions and we watched them all ignore her, one way or another.

Screenshot-220Even I got bored eventually. I had never tried solving a crime before and I had no clue of what I was supposed to do. We took our retreat to The Blank Slate, where Quince offered comfort in form of drinks and encouraging words. And best of all, I could clear my thoughts by playing darts. I had recently discovered how much I enjoyed it, mostly because no one else ever played so I could be on my own, in the background. But also because it offered peace for my mind, a pause from everything else.

That’s not to say I was very good at it, ’cause I sure wasn’t. In fact, I was happy if the dart even hit the board. No matter, I enjoyed it and I couldn’t think of many other things that I enjoyed doing because it was fun to me, and not because someone else wanted me to do it.

Screenshot-223“Uhm…” Someone cleared her throat behind me just as I was about to throw my last dart in this set and it made me lose focus so the dart flew in to the stone wall next to the board with a loud sound. I sighed, just my luck.

Screenshot-222I turned around and saw Cinnamon standing there, scratching her head and blushing slightly. “So, I hear you’re researching too” she said and dropped her hand in front of her. Her body rocked back and forth and she actually seemed nervous.

“Mhm” I mumbled and went towards the dart board to pick up my darts for another set. I was still a bit frightened of her since she screamed at me that one time.

“Are you getting anywhere?”

“I thought that was a topic you’re not supposed to talk about in the open” I snapped, annoyed because she got to make her own rules in this matter.

Screenshot-226“Well, there’s no one else close” she said and twisted her body. “I just… Maybe we could help each other out? Cooperate?

I stopped trying to play and turned around again. Even though she somewhat scared me, I knew we needed her help. Three brains would be better than two, besides, she probably had some ideas already and I just wanted the whole thing solved so I could go back to doing nothing with a clear consience again. “What made you change your mind?” I wondered.

“I don’t know. Guess you seem quite cool” she shrugged.

Screenshot-224“You really think the Sourz did it?” she asked me a while later. I don’t know if she played darts with me because she felt like she had things to make up for, or if she actually liked it. But I must say, she had more talent than me.

“I don’t know. It seems possible. I mean, they do hate colorless. They always have.”

“But still, the most powerful family in Fondant Fields? Not even them could get away with murder!”

I laughed, “You’re forgetting that whoever did this actually did get away with murder. Easily.”

“I mean, they must have some kind of conscience. Even them.”

“You don’t think they did it?”

Screenshot-143“Well, the thought crossed my mind. But I… Dunno. Do they have access to guns?”

“Doesn’t every privilegied family in this town do?”

WEd finished the game and Cinnamon pretty much humiliated me with several bulls-eyes. It was fun, though, and it felt like we had got a fresh start. We promised to meet again tomorrow, just to investigate the Sourz family even more. We wanted as much information as we could possibly gather, and our main goal was to find their passport pictures to show Quince. With some luck, he could tell us if they were the ones who had done it.

Chapter 2.1: Where it all began

You should never start a story with the words ‘It all began when…’. It may be a common way to start a story but it’s never true. Nothing ever starts somewhere. Every event always evolves from previous events and therefore it’s impossible to say that all started anywhere. Yet, every story has to start somewhere so you have to make that choice anyway. Mine starts when Affair dies:

It was one of the normal saturday evenings. I was at The Blank Slate along with Sweet Corn, Mithos and their friends. Quince and Affair were the ones manning the bar that night. As usual, it was a nice atmosphere. People were happy at The Blank Slate and ever since the grand opening on my birthday it had been the perfect place for us colorless and our supporters. It had always worked just as it was intended.

We had a great time until Sweets had one too many juices (Quince thought it was hilarious to serve her drinks despite her young age) and I had to take my responsibility as a brother to get her back home safe. I didn’t mind that much to be honest, she was quite fun to watch and I thought a night at home could be just as entertaining as a night at the pub. So, I didn’t complain, I just brought her home. Without telling mom and dad anything about her state, might I add.

After putting her to sleep, I enjoyed myself with some reading. It was calm and relaxing laying in my bed just getting lost in the book’s world. Sweets snoring functioned as a quite nice sound effect.

I fell asleep before Quince came home so I could never see him (nor hear him) as he sat on the edge of the bed crying.

In fact, I didn’t notice his crying until I woke up the next day by him spinning back and forth in bed, whimpering. It took me a moment to realize the whimpering was in fact crying. When I did realize, I went to wake him up, thinking he must have had a nightmare.

The look in his eyes as he opened them is something I will never forget. They say the eyes are a reflection to a berry’s soul and if that’s so, I’m really worried about my elder brother. “What is it, Quincie?” I wondered, already knowing that something was terribly wrong.

“He’s dead” Quince sobbed and started crying hysterically.

I didn’t even ask who it was or what it was, instead I ran in to my parents bedroom to wake them up. “Quince needs you. NOW!” I yelled and they both jumped out of bed, realizing I would never wake them in such a manner unless it was an emergency. I followed them as they hurried in to our bedroom.

“What’s the matter Quince?” mom asked, fear and worry filling her voice.

“He’s dead” Quince sobbed. “Thee-eey ki-ii-ii-lled hi-iim.”

“Who’s dead and who killed him?” Dad asked, managing to stay calm.

Quince kept sobbing but managed to get out that it was Affair who had been killed. That two antagonists had managed to get to The Blank Slate just an hour before closing time the previous night and that they had shot Affair in the back, with the words, “This is how much colorless are worth!” It obviously triggered panic among all the guests at the pub and Quince himself had just managed to duck behind the bar when the second bullet pierced one of the bottles behind him. The two antagonists then disappeared from the scene.

I never had a personal relation to Affair but my family was hurting after his death. Especially Quince, who had been the one to watch Affair take his final breath and the one to hear his final words. I knew them all too well because Quince kept whispering them uneasy as he spun back and forth in nightmares. “Never give up, Quincie. Keep fighting.”

I didn’t hurt that much. But I did feel something else. A feeling that was well-known to me, it was probably the feeling I knew best. Guilt. District 0 was my fault and District 0 fueled the grudge against colorless and their supporters and that was what killed Affair. Alas, Affair died because of me.

I had learned to live with the guilt from District 0 on my shoulders, but it would be impossible to also carry the guilt of a young man’s death. Yet, that was what expected from me.

Some say that a ‘bow will never have to go through more than he or she actually can and that the stronger ‘bows will have more to carry. I don’t know who or what force does the calculations for that, but I knew there had been a miscalculation when it came to me. I wasn’t strong. I couldn’t carry all of this.

Affair’s death became big news and the fact that it was a political murder raised a question Fondant Fields had been struggling with for decades. Was it really that bad wanting rights for colorless? 

Despite that, the killers were never found. In fact, no one officially seemed to look for them. At least, neither me or my siblings were ever questioned by the police. And out of our friends and supporters, no one else had been either.

The fact was that even when Quince called the police and gave a signalment, nothing happened. It should have been easy to catch them since the murder happened in front of many witnesses. But, since it was a supporter of colorless who died, no one cared enough. Or rather, no one was allowed to care enough.

The Blank Slate was never shut down even though it had been revealed. I guess it was because if they would have decided to shut it down, they would also have admitted that something happened there, and since there seemed to be no plans of solving the crime, they couldn’t close the pub either.

So, things kept going on as they had been, only that the difference was that Affair had been killed because of his political opinions. And even though Mayor Bloom tried to keep the whole event a secret, words started to spread.

The number of new members to Flax’s party shot through the roof as a consequence and the general public started to question Mayor Bloom and his restrictions against colorless. Despite the sad event it was, it became a much-needed fuel in the fight.

Generation 1 finale: The Blank Slate

By the time the twins were about to celebrate their birthday we were ready to open The Blank Slate. With Thunderbird and Quince in the lead, we had worked with the opening of the pub parallel with the uprising.

It was nothing special, really. But it was situated outside the district and it was a place were we could welcome colorless and supporters to actually have a relaxed and fun evening. It was located in the town’s outskirts, which was a quite deserted area that felt safe enough. It had to be a secret, of course, and only the most consecrated could be invited.

It was the first of my kids birthday’s that could be properly celebrated and we were all excited beyond words.

Mithos and Quince had worked the entire morning with decorating the pub and the stone walls were covered with streamers and behind the bar hung a big banner with the twins’ names on it. It looked amazing and I was so proud. They were only teenagers and they had already managed to do this.

The hours before the party and the grand opening Quince was nervously checking that everything was in order. He ordered the staff to clean the glasses one additional time and had them practice to mix White Feeling one last time. White Feeling was a juice drink that he and Thunderbird had come up with all be themselves. It would be The Blank Slate’s special drink.

The place was soon filled with our closest friends and their families. Pretty much every member of Whites made their way there, as well as the majority of the inhabitants of District 0.

The mood in the room was uplifting and happy. Everyone had a smile on their face.

It was the perfect birthday celebration and premiere one could ever have hoped for. Berries of all colors danced together and laughed together. This what exactly what the world could be like. I just knew that this place would become one of the greatest sanctuaries ever. It would be a place that looked beyond skin color and ruling politics. It would be a place were every color deserved happiness.

My daughter enjoyed the evening to the fullest, she made sure to constantly be the centre of attention as she swung her hips at the dance floor. “Mom, look at me now! Quincie, come dance with me!”

I looked around and all I could see was happy faces (well, apart from the grumpy lady who insisted on just standing by the edge of the dance floor, not daring to dance because it was childish – but that was her loss really). It was hard to imagine that outside these walls were different rules. It was hard to even think about the fact that this place would be shut down immediately if the government found out about its whereabouts.

It didn’t make any sense.

“What are you thinking of over there?” the bartender raised his voice and shouted to Mithos on the far side of the bar.

Mithos had a drink in his hand and he was looking both proud and a bit nervous at the same time. I knew he was thinking about the same things as I was, that The Blank Slate was already a lovely place. But it was also dangerous for everyone involved.

“Nothing special. Just what a great night this is” Mithos replied and shot off a bright smile. “Why don’t you serve the lady there a drink instead” he added after a while and nodded towards Bluebell who sat between them.

The bartender chuckled and turned towards Bluebell, “And what can I get you?”

“A white feeling, of course” she giggled and her eyes sparkled. She was one of the most precious young girls I knew. I was indescribable happy that she and Quince were still so good friends.

As the bartender got started on Bluebell’s drink, Quince joined her at the bar and smiled widely towards her. “Having a good time?” he wondered.

“This is amazing!” Bluebell exclaimed with enthusiasm. “I can’t believe you have done all this! My best friend Quincie, owning a bar. Can you believe it yourself?!”

“Dunno. It’s quite cool, I suppose. You have to promise to come here regularly. I count on you, you know?”

“I couldn’t keep away even if I tried” Bluebell replied and went over to wrap her arms around my son. “I’m so proud of you” she whispered and gave him a quick peck on the cheek which made him blush.

Bluebell then went back to her seat at the bar to wait for her drink. Quince kept staring after her, smiling widely.

“Cheers!” he shouted once Bluebell had gotten her drink and they slammed their glasses together and took a sip each.

“Come, let’s dance!” Quince pulled Bluebell with him to the dance floor and started swinging his hips back and forth to a fault. Bluebell laughed loudly and started dancing with him.

They were sweet together and the memory of me and Pixie joking about the two of them falling in love many years ago, suddenly came back to me. I couldn’t help but giggle, it seemed like it wasn’t that far away. It was certainly a possibility.

Eventually, Sweet Corn demanded to get to blow her candles and as she and Sundance did everyone cheered and sang for them.

Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday dear Twist twins
Happy Birthday to you

Sweet Corn enjoyed the attention and did a dramatic pirouette in front of everyone and ended by bowing low before her audience.

“Now I want to dance!” she shouted out after rapidly finishing a slice of the birthday cake. “Come on Sunny, it’s your day too!”

Sundance complained at first but eventually he let himself get dragged to the dance floor. It turned out that he was quite the dancer, even though he had never really tried before. At least not that we knew of. He kept true to himself by moving to a corner of the dance floor, trying to keep to himself even though he was one of the main attractions of the evening.

As the night went on Sundance seemed to gain more and more confidence and moved further and further out on the dance floor. About an hour after his first step on the black -painted floor he was standing in the centre of it with a content and thrilled smile on his lips.

“That’s right Sunny. Swing those hips!” Quince laughed and took Sundance’s hands to turn him around in a pirouette. The two of them broke out in laughter shortly after and it was contagious. The mood in the room lifted at the sight of the two boys joy.

Affair gathered enough courage to dance up towards Sweet Corn and take her hands as well. She happily agreed and just as she did Affair imitated Quince’s move with Sundance and turned her around in a pirouette. An even wider smile broke loose in her face and as she watched the young purple guy in front of her, I couldn’t help but think that there was some extra spark in her eyes.

After the jokingly pirouette, the two of them were practically glued together for the rest of the night.

It was way past midnight when the guests started to drop off and Quince, Mithos and Thunderbird could start cleaning things up behind the bar. We stuck around for support and Bluebell made sure Sundance never got to sit down. After Sweet Corn gave in for aching feet, Sundance and Bluebell were the last couple on the dance floor. They danced and laughed for another hour until it was time to go home.

All in all, the birthday party and the premiere had been everything we had hoped for. In fact, it had been more than we hoped for. The Blank Slate was exactly the new page our life story needed.

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