I awoke the next morning to my phone buzzing on the ground.
I groggily pulled myself out of bed and picked up my phone. The caller ID read "Starlight Shores Fire Department."
Oh, this should be good, I thought as I answered the call.
"Unless you want to buy the freaking fire alarm for me yourself, don't wake me up at 6 AM!"
"What? Uh... We're trying to get in touch with Zane Parfait... We've got a job offer for him..."
"Y-You want to offer me a job?"
"Yeah... One of our firefighters recommended you. We're in need of more people over at the station, so if you're interested just stop by later today."
I had never thought about being a fireman. All my life I had been so set on music that I never considered my other options... The theatre definitely didn't want me, and this could be my last job opportunity for awhile. It was this or nothing. "All right, I'll be there."
I rushed to get ready. I made the bed and changed clothes. Goodbye, rock-hard abs.
Entering the kitchen, I realized that my stove was still burned to a crisp. I wasn't entirely ready to try cooking on that stove again, anyways... I settled on cereal.
I would have preferred waffles to soggy cheerios any day.
I called over a taxi to take me to the fire station. No hot taxi driver? Awww...
The fire station was huge - three stories high, from what I could tell! The door was unlocked, so I went right inside.
I was greeted by a guy about my age with greasy black hair. He looked like he had been out fighting fires all morning.
"Hi, you must be Zane. Wow, she really wasn't lying when she said you have green hair... Anyways, I'm Rahsaan, the head firefighter here."
"So. Ashley, the firefighter we sent over to your house last night, says that you're not too bad at fighting fires."
"No, it was nothing, really... I wasn't of much help," I mumbled.
Rahsaan laughed. "That's not what she told me. Anyways, we'd be happy to train you. We'll pay you a bit of cash, let you roam around the station anytime you like, plus you'll be saving lives. What do you say?"
It's this or nothing. "...Sure. I'll do it."
"All right! Just sign these papers and you start tomorrow at the crack of dawn," he said, handing me a thin packet. "Oh, and you might want to shape up a little. You've got plenty of muscle, but it's endurance that matters out there. Brush up your screwdriver skills as well - you're going to be fixing the alarms and the engine constantly. They break every other day..."
After I left the station, I headed over to the gym to pump some iron. I hadn't exercised in ages, and I'd definitely never used one of those before.
"You're doing it wrong, you know."
At first I wasn't certain it was the same girl, but at a second glance... Oh my God, it's the hot girl from the beach.
"Yeah?" I asked, getting up to go talk to her. "And what's the right way?"
"Judging by the shape you're in, you don't need me to explain how to work one of those," she said, laughing.
She was totally checking me out.
"So do you come here often?"
She nodded, smiling. "But if you're thinking about trying to hit on me again, don't even bother. I'm happily married and I want to stay that way."
"Ooh, harsh much?"
She stuck out her tongue playfully. She's just playing hard to get. She's totally into me.
"Listen, it's getting late and I've got to get home and feed my toddler, but I'll see you around." As she turned to go, she slipped something into the pocket of my hoodie.
"Wait... You're a mother?!" I shouted after her as she ran off. Yeesh. Once children are in the picture, things become much more complicated. I would know...
I pulled a slip of paper out of my pocket and unfolded it. Scrawled in loopy writing, it said: "If you ever need a friend, I'm just a phone call away. -Aurora" A phone number was written underneath.
Friends... I can be friends with a girl.
I looked out the window and realized the sun had already set. "Dang, where did the day go?" I whispered to myself.
I hailed down a taxi outside the gym. Helloooo hot taxi driver!
And we sped away up into the hills where my little lonely house was situated.
I went inside and started making the one thing I couldn't possibly mess up: salad.
Realizing I hated cooking even when I wasn't burning down the house, I made enough for several nights so I wouldn't have to cook again.
Oh, but it was the best salad I had ever tasted...
That night, I climbed into bed at a reasonable hour with a stomach full of real food, a job, and a friend or two, feeling much better than the night before. Maybe tonight I'll be able to sleep peacefully.
But peaceful nights are unheard of at my house.
I stirred awake as I heard the door swing open.
Oh my God, I'm being robbed... I'm being robbed!!!
I didn't have a burglar alarm and my cell phone was ten feet away on the kitchen counter, so I did the next best thing: I confronted the burglar.
"Who the hell are you and what are you doing in my house?!"
"I-I-I'm robbing you! So... So you'd better go sit in a corner! Because... I have a gun! In my pocket! And it's loaded!"
"How about you leave before I call the cops?" I yelled. "I bet I can take you in a fight!"
"Really? Well why don't we see who wins, you little grasshopper!"
I was shocked back to a distant memory from elementary school... A friend looming over a first grader out on the field. "I bet I can squash you with my foot, like a little grasshopper!"
"Oh my God... Derek?"
"Dude, what the hell are you doing?!"
"Oh... Oh my God... I-I didn't recognize you at first..."
"Is this how you make your money now?! Robbing houses? What happened to you, Derek?!"
"It's Dub now," he said, pulling off his hat and unleashing a flurry of dark blue hair that I didn't remember.
Derek Ulysses Bryant... D.U.B. Of course.
"Dude... What's with the blue hair and the beard and the burglar outfit?"
Derek - Dub - scowled. "You shouldn't be talking. You've got a head of green hair with some swagger-boy haircut and an ear piercing."
"My hair was always green. Last I checked, your hair was brown. Did you get a tattoo as well?"
"Look, dude, I really need a place to stay for just one night... Please."
"Where's Charlotte and the baby?" I asked quietly.
Dub looked away. "Charlotte kicked me out."
I wanted to feel sympathy for him, but after everything we'd been through I just couldn't bring myself to comfort him.
"I don't know what's going on with her. She hasn't been the same since the baby arrived. She's been visiting the doctor a lot with the baby, getting tests done, and she hasn't been talking to me... We don't even sleep in the same bed anymore."
"What is it? Is the baby sick or something? Is she pregnant again?"
"I don't know... Bennett seems fine, and we haven't...done anything, so I really just don't know..."
"Look, Dub, I don't know if this is a good idea-"
"Please, Zane! We're friends...remember?"
"Were friends, Dub. We were friends."
I sighed. "One night. I haven't got a couch or anything, so you'll have to make do with the floor."
"But you've got a double bed, and friends-"
"We're not friends, Dub." Dub hung his head. "You know what, fine. But stay on your side."
At last, there was a living, breathing human being lying in the bed next to me.
And for once, I would have preferred loneliness to the company.
So, what's the whole quarrel between Zane and Dub about? Well, you'll have to find out in the next chapter... ;)
Hope you liked it! It was a bit shorter than the first chapter, but I made up for the lack of pictures with a bit more writing. The day went by so quickly... I didn't even realize the sun was down until Zane started complaining about being tired. Speaking of tired people... *yawn* I stay up wayyy too late writing, heheh. The good news is that I'll have plenty of time to sit around writing during the day over the next few days because we'll be spending a lot of time renovating our new house! That means hours and hours of simming (with lunch, swimming, and dinner breaks) for me! (Because I don't know how to change locks or replace windows... :P )
Oh yeah, and yesterday (actually, two days ago now) I tried bubble tea for the first time, and dang is that stuff good! It's like a smoothie... WITH BUBBLES!! Seriously, the tapioca balls make drinking smoothies so much more entertaining. Anyone who hasn't tried this stuff needs to. I think I'm obsessed with it.
I need to get some sleep now or else I'm going to wake up as a zombie like yesterday, so I'm gonna call it a night and hit the sack! See ya soon with some new sims! :D