Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Generation Five — Chapter Seven: Going Forward — At The Speed of Life

     Joseph was full of vigor, while only a short time ago, he felt the first pangs of slowing down. However, he figured out what his ancestors had done wrong. They waited, he surmised, until they were already in their Elder years before taking the Potion of Youth. In fact, as Erik told him, the Rock Star, himself, having used a variety of herbs his whole life, waited until he was nearly at twilight to try it. His life was extended, but at a stage where he was also accompanied by the aches and pains of his elder years. Yes, he was around to experience things in life he may not have experienced, his children growing up and having children of their own, but not at a level of quality that would allow for him to do more with them.
So, Joseph, taking the lesson taught, deemed it time, a few days off of becoming an Elder himself, to consume the Potion of Youth. And prior to the indignities of later life had fully set in. He was amazed at how reinvigorated he actually felt. And just how great he looked. Now, he may have enough time to finish his career. His most recent promotion, to that of Rising Comedian. Certainly, his aspiration of becoming a Joke Star had been fulfilled.

     Not only that, but his son, Rory, had managed to pull up his flagging grades to an acceptable B by graduation. The boy lost little time in asking his childhood sweetheart to marry him. So Rory was also proving time was not to be wasted. Birthdays came and went. Aubrey now a teen. Things were a tad hectic. And that menace of a Cowplant, Elsa, died. Finally.  But, not before it tried to consume his future daughter-in-law!  Joseph went out one morning to check on the plant, make sure it was well fed so no one else would suffer the loss of their loved one, only to find it was nothing more than a skeleton. That was a tad shocking, unexpected. Erik, who was by far, more attached to the thing, took it in stride.  

     “Sorry, Gramps. Elsa has gone to the great beyond. I think we should change her name to Bones.”

      “Don’t worry, son. We all did our best to maintain the garden. These things happen. Remember, there is a time for everything. A time to live; a time to die. It was Elsa’s time, I guess. Life goes on. And now I don’t have to worry so much.” With that, the ghost went for a swim.

        Once Rory and Ericka announced their engagement, Joseph made the wedding arrangements.    He already had been to the new Wedding Park in town. It was perfect. Completely decorated and setup for all the needs of a wedding event. A small kitchenette was also on site, along with a large DJ rig, dance floor and a bar in the far corner behind the wedding arch and seats. He was certain the couple would love it. 

While Ericka, an orphan, as it turned out, selected and tried on a multitude of gowns, Rory found just the right tuxedo. Aubrey helped with the choice of the bridesmaid’s attire. Even Erik got himself all shined up for the event. This would be the first time in a long time he didn’t bake the wedding cake, but he was okay with being a guest this time.
The early evening was glorious by the time the wedding party arrived at the venue. Lights strung from trees created a special romantic glow to the evening. The guests filed into the park, the hired help got busy with the refreshments. The only glitch in the affair was the inability for the mixologist to access the bar. It was completely surrounded by shrubbery. Joseph abruptly removed the offensive plant and the mixologist got to work. 

The ceremony was simple, but beautiful. The two stood before the arch, said their vows, exchanged rings, kissed, hugged and then cut the wedding cake. The guests sat at the tables and chairs, while others danced to the music provided by the professional DJ. Still others hung out in the corner by the bar. The night wore on, the wedding event quite the success. Soon, dawn broke slowly across the gloaming.  

     Understandably, the newlyweds quickly went home. Joseph did his best to clean up the venue, as per the rental agreement and then made his way home, too. With a new person in their household, there was an understandable need to make a few adjustments. Joseph contemplated seeking a loan so that their third floor could, once again, be converted to a small apartment to afford the young couple the privacy they deserved.
Before he could set these plans in motion, Ericka was announcing her Big News. 
“A baby? You’re having a baby. I must say that was quick,” Joseph said, secretly wondering if that’s why his son was so quick to pop the question, and so very anxious to be wed. She did have a baby bump already. Joseph shook it off. The couple were happily wed and that’s all that mattered. But, he did give his plans a longer, harder consideration. Was he up to having his sleep disrupted several times a night? His bedroom was just across the hallway from Rory’s room. Converting the third floor would require a huge sum of Simoleons. They had slowly dismantled and sold what had been the kitchen up there. Even the livingroom had been cannibalized as funds were needed. The only thing left was the three-quarter bath and the two bedrooms, unfurnished. 

     Joseph decided he would talk it over with Gramps, and if he could get a loan to cover all of the expenses, known and hidden, he would get going on it. For now, he sat back and reveled in the fact he was going to be a Grandfather. Young enough to truly enjoy the experience. And that was something.

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