Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Generation Eight — Chapter Four: Earth Rattling Moments …

Just as Trenton leaned over the table blowing out the candles on his birthday cake, he heard a curious rumbling noise. This was not the first time, but rather the second time in as many days. What was going on? As he stood back up, underneath him the ground began to move. First a sudden jarring jolt, followed quickly by a steady tremble.  A rocking motion that lasted for what felt like an eternity, but in reality only lasted about twenty seconds. Looking around him, he was uncertain what was happening. He could feel the house shaking. Feeling very insecure, he clutched the edges of the table, trying to hold on.  He had no idea that turning thirty was so earth-rattling.
    His first instinct was to run outside, but they were already out on the patio. Besides, before he could get his feet to move, the tremble stop. Abruptly. All was still again. Or, at least the ground was no longer in movement that he could detect. He couldn’t say the same thing for himself. Trenton was shaking like a leaf in the wind. He took a seat at the patio table.
    “Anybody want cake?” he said, knife in unsteady hand. “Where did everybody go?”
    “I’m just hanging out in the door-jamb,” Seth called back. “That’s what they taught us in school, at least.”
    “What, on Earth was that?” Both Betsy and Hannah chorused. They, too, squeezed themselves into the back door frame, next to Seth.
     “That,” Gramps began, “is what’s known as an earthquake.”
     While looking for something to read, awhile back, Trenton came across an interesting book all but hidden behind other books on the shelf.  Inspecting the cover, the images of a singer looked curiously familiar.  Looking closer at it, he was excited to see it was written by a long-departed relative. The book had sat there so long, he was surprised he hadn’t found it sooner. He’d read nearly everything else in the house. Taking it off the shelf, he blew the dust off of the top pages. Intrigued, he eagerly flipped through it. Turned out to be a biography of Gramps.

    Always the bookworm, Trenton sat down and read the entire thing in one day. He was dumbfounded at just who Gramps was, and how badly he’d been ripped off by a trusted employee. Erik Cantrell’s accountant had slowly drained away Erik’s hard-earned assets. Mega-Super Rock Star that he’d been, it wasn’t hard to realize he’d chosen this beautiful piece of land — which was made affordable because it sat on a Fault Line. Erik needed a new life, a change of pace. He wanted off the merry-go-round of fame. So, he bought the only piece of land he could afford, despite the Fault. 
“So, Gramps, enjoying the ride?” Trenton said, as Gramps floated about, nonchalantly, nearby.
    “I see you’ve read my biography,” Gramps said. “I had to get out of Sunset Valley. I was mostly broke, and what few Simoleons I had left allowed me to purchase this piece of land. You have to admit, it has quite a view. And to be honest, this is really the first time the Fault has made itself known. It’s been decades.”
    “That is has. Quite a view, I mean.”
    All of these years, the tectonic plates had remained stable. Dormant. So, just what agitated them, now? Trenton didn’t know, but he would seek information on the internet. Before he could do anything, his cell phone went off. Taking the device from his pocket, he could see it was his boss calling.
    “Trenton Cantrell,” he said, clicking a button.
    “Cantrell, you had best be lying on your death bed! You’re late. If you don’t wish to have your career ended abruptly, I suggest you get yourself down here.”
    Trenton didn’t get a chance to speak for himself, his boss hung up, that quickly. He’d take the time to mention to his boss, after he got to work, that an earthquake had hit, which required he check out his home for damage.  What else could he do?
 Fortunately enough, Trenton arrived at work, focused and ready to go. He put in some hard work, too. Able to smooth things over with this boss, he got home that night with a new job title and a raise. He was now a Technician. This was a good thing. Tiana was a number of years older than Trenton, and her birthday was coming up. She shared her day with their triplets, who were about to enter their teen years.
Trenton was uncertain just how long Tiana could handle the grind of a daily job. He had to admit that being a Writer wasn’t as stressful as managing a restaurant, but still. His dear wife wasn’t getting any younger. He could tell by how worn out she got. She wasn’t strutting her way through the days anymore. On the whole, he had to admit, she was slowing down.
    The day was upon them, and Gramps was up early baking. A chocolate cake for Tiana and cakes for the triplets. For Seth, he made a hamburger cake. The girls shared a chocolate cake like their mother’s.  They had a household of six, if you didn’t count their many deceased relatives that visited nightly, that is. That was a lot of cake. 

    One by one the birthday Sims had their chance to make a wish and blow out the candles. How quickly the children had grown.  Trenton sighed. Before he knew it, all three raced out the door to San Myshuno, a new district nearby. He wasn’t worried, knowing they would be gone for several hours. The girls had their brother to protect them, after all.

    All three of them were into singing, too. Sadly, all three of them were simply terrible at it. But, for now, at least they were out of the house and likely singing at the Festival. For a brief few hours, his eardrums could rest. While he encouraged the pursuit of music, it was somehow easier to endure the squeals of a violin over the screech of the Sim voice. Oh, well, perhaps, in time, their voices would grow into the power of their lungs, emitting enjoyable sounds. He could hope. Why had he allowed Tiana to talk him into purchasing that huge Karaoke machine? If the three didn’t get better, their teenage years were going to be long.


No comments:

Post a Comment