November 05: To the Hills! (Pt. 3)

Go back to…
part 2

Police Wanted

Near the end of November, mayor Henry visited chief of police Andrew Chapman at the Honeycomb Valley Police Department to discuss an important matter.

84

“As you may well know, we’re making a lot of progress in Honeycomb Hills. The underground station has been opened and Honeycomb University is up and running. Now we turn to the downtown area. There’s lots to be done there. A lot of derelict buildings still.85

“And that’s where I need your help. We know a lot of these buildings are being illegally occupied by squaters and criminals. I think it’s of great importance to have a police force in place in Honeycomb Hills to get these people out and keep the peace. Three officers should be enough, but we do need them there permanently.” 

Andrew listened to Henry and contemplated.

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“So they would have to commute? Or can they live there? Many of my officers have families. How about education for the children? 

Henry explained all the details and Andrew reluctantly agreed.

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“I don’t think they’ll be happy, but I understand the issue at hand. I’ll find you three officers and get back to within a few days.”

With that, Henry thanked Andrew and they parted ways.

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The next day, Andrew organised a meeting to explain the situation to the force.

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“… And so, we’re in need of three people who can do this job and pretty much run the Honeycomb Hills department. Chances are, it’s going to be a whole, exciting new challenge and opportunity. If you wish to commute, a car will be provided. If you wish to relocate, you’ll get a compensation for any moving costs.

He then gave everyone a moment to discuss.
Jack and Madison both saw the potential. 91

“I think there will be a lot of work to do. We’ll probably get to work with young people often enough, which can be quite exciting” Jack said.

Max felt differently.

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“I don’t know… I have a family! Commuting every day will mean long days and I just don’t see us moving, how about my kids’ education? As far as I now, there’s no plans to build a school in Honeycomb Hills… Maybe the ones of us who don’t have kids should be going…”

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“Oh, so just because I don’t have a family, I can go, is that what you’re saying?” Emmett retorted. “I have reasons to want to stay too, you know…”

Andrew felt there was something to set straight.90

“Mayor Newman assured me anyone with a family will be well looked after. Max, you’re right, there aren’t going to be primary or high schools in Honeycomb Hills in the near future, but a schoolbus service will pick up any children and teens living there and take them to The Beehive every morning. I agree with Emmett, it shouldn’t just have to be the ones among us who don’t have families, that’s not fair.
Just sleep on it and discuss it with your loved ones. I’m afraid I do need to push you all a bit though, because I’ll need an answer within the next two days. We need three of you. If no one volunteers, I’m sorry, but I will pick someone myself…”

Jack Clark still felt optimistic and it was with this attitude he sat down with his family that same night and told them all about it.

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Jack had thought his daughter would be hardest to convince, because she would have to leave her BFF Kyra behind, but much to his surprise, Holly was actually quite easily sold on the idea of moving to Honeycomb Hills.95

“Oohhh, that will be great! I can have my own horse! I cán have my own horse, right? Just like Molly! And we’ll invite her over and then we can ride through the hills together!”

Her brother Aiden didn’t care either way.

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Katie thought it would be a good career move for her as well, as she figured her boss would be pleased to hear it was her husband who offered to go “to the hills”.

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And then there was Ryan. He didn’t agree with his father’s plans at all..98

“But my friends are here! I will never see Joshua anymore, his parents won’t allow him to visit Honeycomb Hills, I’m sure. And Joel and I just started surfing lessons!”
‘And when will I see Zoe…’ he thought. But this was a thought he didn’t express out loud.

But his parents figured these were things that could be overcome… And so it was settled.

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“Okay, Jack, you can tell Andrew we’re in!”

Later that night, at the Griffiths household, Zoe was doing her homework…

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… and Ellie, Justin and Vicky were sound asleep.

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So Max thought this was the best chance he would get to discuss the issue with Annabel.

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He figured he would start off with the positives and told Annabel about the opportunities the job would bring and the option to commute.103

But Annabel wanted none of it…104

She let Max talk a bit more, and then she had her turn…

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“First of all, commuting?  When will you be home! I can’t do the whole bed routine by myself, Max! And moving? Ellie on a schoolbus? Really? I’m sure she’ll get in trouble the first week and be banned and we’ll have to drive her every day after all. And we’ve just finished this house! We can’t do this, Max!”

Max told her he agreed and would definitely share these concerns with Andrew, but there was still a chance he would get picked anyway.
Annabel was quite worried…

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Madison introduced the topic over dinner…

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And continued on the couch after.108

“I know I haven’t discussed it with you first, but there wasn’t really a chance to. Andrew and the mayor want to promote me to Chief of the Honeycomb Hills department, but we would have to relocate… I sort of already said yes though…”

Easygoing Alexis didn’t mind at all, she was just pleased for her girlfriend.

Back at the Chapman house Tyler and Riley were just about to go to bed, Lillian was reading and Andrew was watching TV when his phone rang.

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He was rather pleased by this call.

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“Ah, that’s great. Yes. Yes, definitely. Thank you Jack, you’re a lifesaver. Madison is going too. Yes, I know. We’ll talk over all the details tomorrow. Okay. Thanks again, have a good night!”

When the kids had gone to bed, Andrew shared the good news with his wife. 111

“So I now have Madison and Jack who agreed to go, but if no one else comes forward, I’ll have to appoint someone and I’m really dreading that…”
“Maybe you should choose one of your younger officers to balance things out” 
Lillian suggested.

Two days later, and after an extensive conversation with Max, who had pretty much begged Andrew not to choose him (“it’ll cost me my marriage!”), Andrew decided to take his wife’s advice and picked…

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…Emmett.
Emmett wasn’t happy at all, since the whole reason he joined the police was to get close to Abbey. And while it had appeared he had a chance with her after the New Years Eve party, he really hadn’t gotten any further with her since. Having to move (or at least commute) to Honeycomb Hills now and not even working with her anymore would ruin his chances for good, he figured. But he couldn’t tell Andrew that, obviously. So he figured he might as well make the best of it…113

“I won’t lie Chief, I was hoping you’d pick someone else. But I am a team player, so when do you need me to go?”

Andrew was pleasantly surprised by this professional attitude Emmett was showing.

Raid

It turned out Andrew needed Emmett to go rather soon, because only three days later, Jack, Madison and Emmett had their first job in Honeycomb Hills. None of them had obviously moved there yet, but the work couldn’t wait.

They met outside the old Stonehill police department.
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Madison had been briefed and now informed her coworkers of the job at hand.

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“See that house back there? With the broken columns and boarded windows? We have reason to believe  that building is illegally occupied. After sundown we’ll enter and arrest the occupants. Now, I don’t know what we’ll find. The occupants might be hostile, but we will not use force unless we have to.

As darkness set in, they went on their way.

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They pulled up quietly…

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… and first inspected the building from the outside…118

They then entered the building! It was clear someone had been staying here!119

But whoever it had been, they were now…120

Gone!

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And so, November came to an end. The winter cold was setting in and December was just around the corner. But more on that another time.

November 05: To the Hills! (Pt. 2)

Go back to…


part 1

A New Home

It wasn’t a very long drive, and soon enough our fivesome found themselves in Honeycomb Hills.

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First they drove by a whole lot of nothing and buildingsites, but soon, the brand new buildings of Honeycomb University appeared.

42

“It should be just around the corner” Dan said. He had mapped out the route thoroughly beforehand.

And he was right. There it was: Student residence A. Or at least that was what it was called for now.

43

After parking the car on the lawn to unload it later, the friends got out to explore the place which would be their home for the next four years.

44

They had all applied for a room online. Sarah and Jill would be roommates, of course. For the boys it had been a bit of a puzzle. Which one of them would have to room with a stranger? After much consideration, they eventually concluded it would have to be James. For starters James didn’t want to share a room with Seth, because he didn’t want to risk walking in on Seth and his sister in bed together. This conclusion led to Daniel and Seth agreeing that it would be best if they shared a room, because the chance of whoever shared with James to walk in on James and anyone was greater than them walking in each other. James didn’t mind. And so, it was settled: Sarah and Jill applied for a shared room, as did Daniel and Seth, while James applied for a room without a preferred roommate.
They had picked up the keys to their rooms back in Honeycomb Valley at the old University building and now they could finally see it. But they had to find it first.

45

Seth and Daniel were in room 3, of which Daniel was sure it was located on the top floor. 46

“You’re wrong Dan, it’s on the first floor, we’re next to James in 1!” Seth called.
And so Daniel walked down again.

Sarah and Jill were in room 5, which was on the top floor. They decided to test the lifts.

47

The girls were quite pleased with what they saw when they entered the room. Sure, it was basic, but fresh and new, and they both agreed they could easily turn this into a great room with a few personal touches.

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Meanwhile, James had entered room 1, where his roommate had already arrived previously. It turned out to be Chris Morgan. Chris had already been studying at Honeycomb Valley University since 03 and James recognised his face from his visits to The Bumblebee, but they had never actually met. He soon learnt Chris was also a music student (third year) and played piano/keyboards, so James obviously felt they would most likely get along great!

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After viewing their rooms, the friends met back at the car to unload everything. Chris lent a hand in getting everything upstairs…50

… while Daniel drove the car to the small parking lot adjacent to the building.

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As he walked back, Daniel looked at the rest of the University campus around him and figured this would actually be quite a nice place to spend a couple of years.

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After taking up all the stuff, Chris decided to play a little something on his keyboards, so James could get a sense of his sound. James thought this was not bad at all and soon joined in on his guitar. Seems these two will be great roommates!

53

While James and Chris were busy playing, another car drove up to the building. The two female inhabitants of room 8 had arrived…

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Suzan and Anna.

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They quickly found their room.56

And where Sarah and Jill had immediately seen the potential, Anna was not amused.  It was plain, boring and waaaaaaay too small…

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She wasted no time uttering her frustration to Suzan. 58

“Are we seriously going to have to live here for years, Su? I’ve only been here ten minutes and I already can’t stand it! And did you see that tiny bathroom, and we even have to share that with whomever is staying in room 6!”

Anna didn’t know it yet, but fortunately for her, room 6 was empty at the moment. The other students occupied rooms 2 and 4, a floor down.
Room 4 had been assigned to Anna’s older brother Harry and best friend Narai, who were both in their fourth and final year and had already been roommates in Honeycomb Valley.
Room 2 housed third year student Mia, who also moved to Honeycomb Hills from the previous student residence in Honeycomb Valley and Nina, a first year student and sister to Lola who had previously been at HVU but had graduated in May.

Harry, Narai, Mia and Nina had all arrived a while ago and had already discovered the common room.

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After taking their stuff to their room, Sarah and Jill went down to the common room as well to meet their housemates.60

They all sat down to have a chat and get acquainted.

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Next, the boys entered. Mia had already gotten to know James up close and personal a month ago (remember this blonde girl?) and she was happy to see him again…

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Daniel and Seth shook some hands as well.

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About 15 minutes later, Anna entered. She wasn’t pleased with this room either…64

…and when she spotted her brother, she immediately started complaining.
Yeah, sorry Harry, but it looks like you’ll be stuck with her again for a year…65

Since it was getting close to dinner time, Sarah and Jill decided they would cook for everyone on this first night, but also made sure to stress this wouldn’t be an everyday thing.66

Their housemates sure appreciated the meal though.67

A couple of days later, when everyone was fully settled in, a bright red fire pick up truck carrying five bicycles and a drumset pulled up on the lawn. The friends couldn’t take their bikes and Daniel’s drums in their rented SUV, so firefighter dads Oliver and Will had promised to bring them down with the truck over the course of the week. So bright and early this morning, here they were.

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James asked his uncle if they wanted to come in and see the place, but Oliver declined.

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“No, sorry, some other time, we have to get back to station asap, we’re supposed to be on duty, you know.”

So, once everything was unloaded, they all said their goodbyes.

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Oliver drove the fire truck back and Will picked up the rental car to drive that back to Honeycomb Valley as well.

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It was actually for the best the dads hadn’t stayed too long, since at 8.30 am that same morning, all first year students were required to make their way to the University Administration to get registered and pick up their class schedules.

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The brand new main building was bright, airy and youthful and Daniel, Seth, James, Sarah and Jill immediately felt right at home there.73

They found the administration office quick enough and soon they were all ready to officially start their lives as university students.

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They decided to mark this moment with a drink in the University café.75

Opening Day

A week later, the moment mayor Henry had been most looking forward to, was finally here: The official opening of Honeycomb University.

The students and staff all gathered to hear Henry speak of hopes and dreams and how you can do anything you set your mind to, as long as you show determination and perserverance.

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He also spoke of future plans for Honeycomb Hills and how these students, being the first residents, had the chance to put their own stamp on the town as well.

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“Talk to me! I will listen!”

After Henry had said his piece, it was chancellor Elizabeth Richards’ turn to address the crowd. She mainly spoke of how proud she was of this new place of education and the opportunities it brought.

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After the doors were officially opened, Abigail conducted an interview with Ch. Richards.80

Meanwhile the students were getting acquainted with the campus and eachother. James had spotted a new face in the crowd…

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“Hey, I’m James, I’m in the A-residence. What’s your name?”

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“I’m Leona, and I’m really sorry James, but I have to run. Maybe I’ll see you around?”
And with that Leona disappeared.

James shrugged and the decided to take a selfie with Dan and play some table football with Nina. Jill and Seth had discovered the arcade machines.

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It seems like University will be great!

There’s more! On to…
part 3

November 05: To The Hills! (Pt. 1)

In November 05, Honeycombers went to the hills! The annexed town of Stonehill was slowly but surely turning into a great place to live (and learn!) and during this autumn month it was the focus of many Honeycomb Valley residents.

Luke and Susie

1

One early November morning, Susie made breakfast which they ate while Boy brought the newspaper in.2

Since it was a nice and sunny day, Luke decided to read the paper out in the sunshine, while heavily pregnant Susie took a moment to relax next to her boyfriend.
2c=3

“Honeycomb Hills!” Luke chuckled. “That’s actually brilliant!”
“Hmm? What?” Susie answered, distracted from her train of thought.
“Stonehill! They named it ‘Honeycomb Hills’. It looks like it’s going to be really nice too. Look, there’s a picture of the public transport station and the new university.”Newspaper honeycomb hills simlish

Welcome to
HONEYCOMB HILLS!

While the contest to rename Stonehill first seemed fruitless, a late entry by 18 year old Rachel Murray proved to be a winner and thus we can now announce the town of Stonehill will, from this day forward, be known as Honeycomb Hills.
Mayor Newman is turning out to be a man true to his word. Over the past few months, there’s been a lot of activity in Honeycomb Hills and as promised, a public transport station with underground and bus links to Honeycomb Valley is the first project to be completed. The grand opening of the station is scheduled for next week, the 8th of November.
Meanwhile, work is also well on the way on the University, which will be renamed from Honeycomb Valley University to simply Honeycomb University.
With classes scheduled to start at the University in just three weeks time, it’s going to be quite a task to complete it in time, but mayor Newman has complete faith in the men carrying out the work and is sure they will finish in time.
Note: The column to the right focusses on Rachel and how she came up with the name.

But Susie had something else on her mind.3“That’s all very nice dear, but how about the work on our house? I don’t know if you noticed, but I’m about to pop out a baby and we have no place to put it, still!”

Hormones…
Luke reassured his girl all would be alright and sure enough, and with a little help from some builder friends, a few days later, the little ranch house was covered in scaffolding. 4

At the Runaway House

Even though Honeycomb Hills was slowly turning into a place worth living, there was still lots to be done as well, and over at the Runaway House…5

… there were two ‘ladies’ who still felt like they were alone in this town. Judging by the volume of their voices…6

“Listen ‘miss Martha’, I don’t know what you are thinking, walking around here like you own the place, but this is still mine and Ray’s house and you are lucky we let you stay here!”
“Oh is that right? Who died and made you boss, Liz?” Martha retorted.

But Ray had enough.
7

“Will you stop it!? The both of you! First of all, Liz, yes, I invited Martha to stay here, just like I invited you to stay here a year ago. But it’s not ‘our house’. Hell, we’re lucky to even have this roof over our heads!”

8

“And secondly, will you both just keep. it. down.?! I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but we’re not alone in this town anymore and we should lay low. Which isn’t happening with the both of you having daily shooting matches!”

And with that, Ray left to get some air.
Martha followed.9

“I’m sorry Ray, you’re right, we do need to cool it…”
Ray sighed “It’s okay. I’m just worried… What with all the building that’s going on around town, I think it’s only going to be a matter of time until we are found out and forced out of here. And worse, are all send back to where we came from…”

10

“I’ve been thinking, maybe it’s time to leave this place and head into the hills. I have a tent and we have the sleepingbags… Sure, we’ll lose the comforts of having a roof over our heads and running water, but at least we won’t be found… How about we go and explore, see if there’s a spot where we could set up camp?”

Martha agreed, and after Ray talked to Liz, she also reluctantly had to admit this would actually be best.

And so, when dusk settled in, they went into the hills to find a spot.11

After a long hike, they discovered a great big, secluded pond.12

“This might work…” Ray said. “We could catch some fish here too for food.”
But Liz wasn’t happy. 13

“You can’t be serious Ray… It’s freezing here and it’s only November… We’ll die out here when winter comes around… I’m going back to the house.”

And so, Liz left. 14

Ray and Martha decided to stay to test the spot a bit more. To see if there were actually fish here and how cold it would get as it got later.
They had soon caught a lot of fish which they roasted over a fire (The firepit and chairs were already there, this place must have been a great camping spot back in the glory days of Stonehill)15

With the fire burning, it wasn’t actually that cold, so after they finished their fish, Ray and Martha sat down to have a chat.16“So your parents really sold you to nuns?”
“Yep. Well, no, they didn’t sell me, but they did try to stick me in a convent…”
“Wow…”17

“…”
“So how about you, Ray? What’s your tale?”

18

“Ah, you know the story. Boy is born to unfit parents. Boy gets placed in the foster care system. The system fails boy. Boy gets in trouble at school. Boy gets kicked out of school, and then another, and then another. Boy goes from one foster family to the next. None of them really want him. Boy decides ‘screw you all’ and runs away.”
“That must have been tough…”
Ray shrugged. “Just life. Well, my life anyway.”

After sitting in silence for a bit longer, Ray suggested they’d head back to the house.
“But first, there’s a little thing I’ve been wanting to do for weeks now…”

19

Being a runaway sure had its perks, Martha felt.

After that kiss, Ray and Martha went back to the house.
20

When they got ‘home’, Martha went upstairs to make use of the running water while they still had it.

Meanwhile, Liz took care of Ray…21

“You look sore and cold from that long walk, Ray. How about I give you a massage?”

Since Ray knew Liz gave the best massages, he allowed her to do her thing.22

“So much tension! You know, I can think of another way to relieve that tension…”

23

“We can’t do that, Liz, you know we’re not alone in the house anymore” Ray whispered back.

Oh dear, what will come of this…?

The Public Transport Station

On the 8th of November, the day was finally here: the first new building in Honeycomb Hills would be officially opened. Of course, Honeycomb Gazette reporter Abigail headed out to report on the opening of the public transport station.

24

It was pouring down that day, so not a lot of Honeycomb Valley residents had made the trip to Honeycomb Hills to attent the opening. But mayor Henry Newman didn’t let that stop him. 25

“Yes, it may be quiet here today, but from this day onward, a little rain will not hinder anyone coming to Honeycomb Hills anymore, since it’s now possible to visit this lovely town by bus or underground as well!

The small crowd that did attent the opening were pleased by Henry’s words and couldn’t wait to go in.26

After the station had officially been opened, Abigail had a little interview with Henry in which he spoke about both the station and the great university campus which was also quite nearly ready.27

Off to University!

In fact, it was only a week and a half later that five nervous but excited best friends were ready for a big lifechanging step…

At the Wyler house the car they rented was ready to be packed.28

Sarah, James, Jill and Seth  (and Daniel, not pictured here) felt it was going to be quite a job to pack everything in the car, but were determined to make it fit.

29

Meanwhile, Patty welcomed the other parents who had all come to wave their children off.

30

Once everything was packed (yes, they managed to make it fit), it was almost time to go. After some last minute well-meant parental advice on the driveway…31

… it was time to say goodbye.32

Dan was a bit anxious though, as Sadie still wasn’t there. She had promised to come straight from school, but was nowhere to be seen…

33

But thankfully, a few minutes later, there she was.

34

Robert, who had still been at work, also arrived just in time to say goodbye to his son and daughter. And Hannah had left work a bit early to wave off her eldest son.35

Daniel was driving, and once everyone has gotten in…

36

…the parents and Sadie got one final look and they were off to Honeycomb Hills.

37

Soon disappearing out of sight.

38

Of course Patty had made a little event of it all and the parents gathered in het backyard for coffee and cakes. 39

See how our students get on in…
part 2

October 05: Moving on (Pt. 2)

Move back to…
part 1

Cats moving on

Sad times for two elderly ladies. Shortly after one another, Pebbles, cat of Donna Mason, and Mitzy, cat of Lydia Chapman, passed away. Both ladies were very upset. Maybe they can comfort eachother?

43

Will Esme move on?

When Spooky day rolled around, the teens of Honeycomb Valley only had a few lessons in the morning. And when Esme left school around noon and went to get her bike to go home, she stumbled upon something she wished she hadn’t…

44

Right… They’re not just friends anymore… For a moment Esme considered saying something, but she decided against it and quietly got her bike and rode off towards Martha‘s house. Only to realise when she was nearly there, her friend would not be…

45

So, she wandered unto the grassy area across from Martha’s house, where the busstop was and got out her phone.

46

– Hey Martha.  I miss you. Where are you? I figured by now you probably haven’t contacted me because the police screen my phone and you don’t want to be found. At least, I hope that’s the reason and you’re not lying dead in a ditch somewhere. I wish you came back… We’d deal with your crazy parents! I really need you back here, so much has happened. My sister is having sex (finally, right?) and Finn and miss too-much-hair are making out. Eugh. I really hope you will reply at some point. For the time being I guess I’ll hang out with Sophie tonight or something. But I’d really rather be with you. Love you. X. –

The party that had nothing to do with moving on

Over at The Greenery, Liam and Isa were playing in his yard, while their parents were preparing for a party.
The residents of The Greenery had decided to throw a feast party together to celebrate Spooky Day and had invited all their joined friends and family to The Field that night.

47

Colin made a fire and since no one had brought any food (yes, it was a FEAST party, yet no one brought anything, stupid glitchy game), Susie tended the barbecue.48

There were chats between friends, and new connections were made.49

There was some dancing. (Joel didn’t seem to mind being the only teen there)50

And Susie drew a picture of Bradley51

Liam played peek-a-boo with Isla and they were watched from some distance by mother-to-be Morgan.52

Morgan couldn’t wait to have a child of her own!53

Despite the party being rather uneventful, the guests stayed long and afterwards felt it had been amazing. Colin finally put out the last fire around 2 in the morning.

54

James and Jill move on

Earlier that same night, James, Daniel, Jill, Sarah and Seth were hanging out at The Bumblebee.

55

But Daniel withdrew himself from the conversation when an interesting text came in. 56

He sat back down for only a few minutes after that and then got up to tell his friends he was leaving.

57

“Right, I’m going. Sadie just texted me saying her parents are going to a party at The Greenery and her sister is out tonight too, so…. yeah… bye!”

58

“What! NO!” Jill exclaimed. “We just got here! You’re ditching your best friends for your girlfriend?!”
“No.” James chuckled. “He’s ditching us to have sex with his girlfriend. Perfectly justified! Bye Dan!”

59

“I seriously can’t believe this!” Jill went on.

60

“Oh, come on.” Sarah joked “You just don’t get it because you haven’t had any in years!”
“Well… that’s not entirely true…”
Jill replied. And looked at James.

6162

This look did not go unnoticed…63

“What was that!?” Sarah uttered. “What was that look?! Did you two…? No, you didn’t seriously go down that road again, did you? When?!”
“After the Christmas party…”

64

“…”

65

“So, does this mean you’re getting back together…?”

66

“No. We’re not.” James said resolutely.
“Well… maybe at some point…” Jill mumbled.

Seth hadn’t said much throughout the whole conversation, but now he was as shocked as his girlfriend was.

67

“I love you both, really, I do, but you just don’t work together! If you do want to give it a go, please consider it VERY thoroughly!”
“Indeed.” 
Sarah agreed.
Then Seth and Jill went to get a drink and James was left at the mercy of his sister…

68

“You’re leading her on, James. She’s not over you, even though it’s been two years. And if you ‘occassionally’, ‘casually’ sleep with her, she never will  get over you. I mean, look at her, she still has hope in her heart you will one day get back together…”
“But we’re not, Sarah. It was just a fun night. You know me, I’m not looking for a steady relationship…”
“I do know that, James, but she doesn’t. And if you sleep with her, it means way more to her than it does to you. And it could ruin your friendship. You have to be honest with her…”
“You’re right, I know you’re right…”

A few drinks and a lot of laughter later, Seth felt it was high time he and Sarah had some privacy, so he told her.

69

She giggled. “Hmm, yeah, let’s go…”
Seth seemed very pleased!70

Just before leaving, Sarah turned to her brother and Jill. “Can we trust you two not to do anything stupid?”
“Sure sis. Go. Have fun.” 
James winked.

As soon as Seth and Sarah had left, James sat next to Jill on the sofa and put his arm around her.

71

“I think we need to talk, Jilly…”
“Yes, you’re probably right…”
“I meant what I said earlier, I really don’t see us getting back together. I mean… you’re great and we both know we have an amazing time whenever we do get together, but I’m… just not in a place in my life where I want to be in a relationship. And I’m not sure if and when I will be, but you shouldn’t put your life on hold waiting for me… You’re much too sexy for that!”

Jill giggled and then got up.

72

“Okay. Okay. But I do love you, James..”
“I love you too, Jilly. You were my first kiss, my first love, my first everything. And on top of that you’re one of my very best friends. And I want us to always have that. Which is all the more reason we should let go…”

“Yes… You’re right.”

And after a looooooong hug, James went on to say:

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“Now, go out there and find some poor sod whose heart you can break. Because you don’t even seem to notice it, but there is some serious interest out there, Jilly. Have you even noticed the way that Narai guy was looking at you when he gave us that tour? “

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“Really!? Hmmm, I might look into that! But now I’m going home.”75

“Bye James…”
“Bye Jilly…”

And with that Jill moved on. As did James. Clearly.76

Lucy moved on

Near the end of the month, there was someone else moving on. This time it was Lucy, who turned 40! She celebrated by having a small dinner party with her family.

Susie and Luke were first to arrive. Lucy couldn’t believe how big her sister’s belly was getting!

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Time for cake!

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Nick in particular seemed excited about his mum’s birthday!

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Then everyone sat down for a delicious turkey dinner Lucy had prepared. It was a good night.

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Stonehill moving on

Meanwhile, work in Stonehill (the competition for a new name hadn’t had any great suggestions so far) moved on as well. Many derelict buildings had already been demolished and work was well on the way  through out the town. Many of the “residents” had left the area.

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But on a small broken down park bench, a girl slept… And she looked familiar…

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However, she wasn’t alone in the park. A boy quietly approached the bench where she slept and ever so silently picked up the backpack which was next to her and then just waited…

Sensing someone was watching her, she woke up and looked up at the boy. The boy holding her backpack.

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She jumped up immediately!

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“That’s mine! Give it back right now!”
“Here you go. You’re just lucky I picked it up and not someone else. Lesson one in sleeping rough: Always hold your belongings close. Oh, and don’t pack them in a fancy backpack. You are clearly new at this. I’m Ray by the way.”
“M…Mmm.. Martha…”
“Nice to meet you, M-Martha. You look like you could use a slightly more decent place to sleep. My friend Liz and I live in that building right there, for as long as it still stands. Come on, just make sure no one sees you.”

And so Martha followed Ray to the building he referred to as the “Runaway House”, where she was introduced to Liz.
They didn’t seem to hit it off…

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And so, October came to an end and everyone moved on. On to November…

October 05: Moving On (Pt.1)

Moving on; according to the dictionary it can mean one of three things: To leave the place where you are staying and go somewhere else, to start a new activity, or, to accept that a situation has changed and be ready to deal with new experiences. Considering the events of October 05, “moving on” certainly seemed to be a theme in Honeycomb Valley…

After Martha moved on

The first day of October marked the morning after Martha‘s disappearance. In the midst of the morning chaos at the Edwards’ house, the fact that she wasn’t there first went unnoticed. There was annoyance over the bathroom and all the kids wolfed down their breakfast in an attempt not to be late for school.

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Joshua was the first to notice his elder sister was not present and he asked his mum if she had seen Martha come down this morning.

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“No, I haven’t seen her” Amy said. “But she was in quite a mood last night, so I guess she just left for school early this morning.”

She hadn’t, as we already know… And Esme obviously noticed this immediately and checked her phone to see if she maybe had a missed message from Martha saying she was home ill or something. There was no message, so Esme decided to send one herself.
– Where are you Marth? Have they send you to the convent already? Text me back! X –

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By the time the first break rolled around, Esme still hadn’t received a reply. This was very unlike Martha… When she noticed Joshua in the cafeteria, she went up to him to ask him if he knew what was up with his sister.

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Joshua explained the events of that morning to Esme…

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“She wasn’t at breakfast either, nor in her bedroom. My mum said she must’ve already gone to school, but I know she had a fight with my parents last night, so that might have something to with it…”
“Yeah, I know, she texted me last night saying something about how your parents want to send her to a convent or something? ”
“Ehhhh, I don’t know about that, but it sure sounds like my dad… I don’t think they already did though, my mum would tell us…”
“Well… something is not right…”

And so, Esme went to the police station after school, to see if someone there could help her. They promised they’d look into it.

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Joshua in turn rushed home after school to share his worries with his mum…

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“… She wasn’t at school! And Esme said Martha texted her last night, something about a convent? Is this true, mum? Have you sent her away?”

And then the realisation of the situation they were in came crashing down on Amy… She immediately called her husband in, who was working in the garden…

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“She’s GONE, John! She must’ve ran away! Where is she, John!? What did we do!? We drove her away, John! This is all our fault!”

It took John a moment to gather his thoughts…

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But he soon realised consoling his wife had top priority.10

“I’m not pleased about this either, dear, but we’ll find her. I mean, how far could she have gone, really?”

Amy and John obviously notified the police as well. Combined with the visit Esme had paid to the police station earlier, the Honeycomb Valley Police Department took this case very seriously and officers Abbey and Andrew were sent out to the Edwards’ house.

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Amy was happy to see them…

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…and immediately started telling them as much as she could.

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John’s tone was a tad different.14

“Martha had lost her way and we were doing all we could to rectify the situation. Yes, we were going to send her to a convent, but as this shows, we were already too late and should have done that a long time ago. I think you should have a chat with that Esme girl as well, she’s been a bad influence on Martha ever since they were children… I wouldn’t be surprised if she was the one who talked her in to running away…

And yes, after the interview with John and Amy, Abbey and Andrew set off to visit the Stevens household.15

Sadie welcomed them in…16

… but it was Esme they came to talk to.17

Esme wasted no time in telling Abbey and Andrew all they needed to hear.18

“These people are crazy, I tell you. Crazy! I’m actually not surprised she ran way. If anything, I’m surprised she stayed as long as she did, to be honest! She was totally repressed there! Her dad would flip out over a skirt! Isn’t that like child abuse or something?”

And she didn’t stop there…

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“No, she hasn’t contacted me, not since last night. You know, that’s weird as well, right? She ALWAYS tells me everything! Are you sure her dad hasn’t stuck her in that convent already? I wouldn’t run it past him… Maybe you should check the place out.”

Moving on to University

A few days later, there was a group of friends moving on in a different way; they officially enrolled in University. Daniel will study History, Sarah and Jill are exploring the culinary curriculum, Seth is going to be a Medicine student and James will obviously study Music.

Suzan and Anna, not pictured here, will take Philosophy and Politics respectively.

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After their official enrollment, our friends had brunch at The Aquarium.

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Finn moves on

Not long after it had become clear Martha had indeed disappeared, missing person posters were put up all over Honeycomb Valley to encourage anyone who had any tips on her whereabouts to contact the police. Posters were also put up around the high school. When Finn caught his ex-girlfriend staring at the poster of her best friend, he felt bad for her and went up to her to ask if she was okay.

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Esme stared at the picture of her missing friend and sighed.23

“I don’t know Finn, I just hope she’s okay..”

A hug always helps, especially one from Finn…

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After this encounter with Esme, Finn and Jada walked home together through the park.25

“You know, Finn…” Jada said.
“Hmm?”
“Don’t take this the wrong way, but… I think she’s still into you…”
“Who is? Esme?”
“Yeah… I mean, I know she’s sad about her friend, and I get that… But that hug… I dunno, it just seems to me there’s maybe more there than you’d think…”
“Hmmm… Well, you know what? It doesn’t matter. Because I’m not into her anymore! Come on, do you want to come over to my place? I have this new album and you just HAVE to hear it!”

And so they did. They had a little dance in Finn’s room.

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And when the music became slower, they moved in a bit closer…27

There was a look…28

… an embrace…29

…and eventually, a kiss.30

Yup, Finn is definitely not into Esme anymore!

Daniel and Sadie move on

Also in October, Daniel and Jill both turned 20. To celebrate, they took their best friends (and obviously Sadie, being Dan’s girlfriend) out for a night of sushi and bowling.

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After they had finished their dinner, Sadie and James, being the singers of The Hot Wings, did a little karaoke together.

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And then it was time to go bowling!

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As the night wore on, Sadie told her boyfriend she had thought of another way they could celebrate his birthday… Daniel didn’t need any further explanation.34

And the two lovebirds got on the subway to go to Sadie’s house.35

Once in Sadie’s bedroom, Daniel took a moment to ask his girlfriend is she was sure she wanted to do this…

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She was.37

The next morning, Daniel was a bit nervous though. Having spent the night meant he would now have to face Sadie’s family and they would probably all put two and two together…
He expressed his worries to Sadie.

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“The only one who’s likely to say anything is my sister and I’ll just tell her to shut up!”

So, they got up, Sadie put on her pyjamas and Daniel grabbed his t-shirt.

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“Don’t worry. Sadie said. “It’ll be fine. I love you.”
“I love you too. Let’s go…”

And sure enough, the first person they ran into downstairs was darling Esme.40

Who wasted no time commenting on the situation…

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“Well, well, look who’s here! So it finally happened, sis? About time too, don’t you agree?”
“Shut up Es.”

And with that, the awkward moment passed and they all enjoyed breakfast together.

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Moving on to…
part 2

September 05: A Little Bit of Everything (Pt.2)

Go back to…
part 1

Joseph and Martha

While the children were at school and John read a book in the autumn sun, Amy was busy making pumpkin pie. After all, it was a special day in the Edwards’ household…

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Little Joseph had turned 1! Happy birthday Joseph! toddler-joseph

When the kids got home, everyone enjoyed a slice of mum’s pie.

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But after they had finished, John had a bone to pick with his daughter Martha.

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“Did you go to school in that outfit, Martha!? That’s unacceptable, young lady! You’re out of control and it’s high time you cleaned up your act!”

Frustrated, Martha called her best friend Esme and asked her to meet at the park.

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Martha wasted no time uttering her frustration.

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“I’m so sick and tired of it all, Es, seriously! I can’t stand living in that house anymore!”

The girls continued their chat on the swings.

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“You know Marth, it’s only two more years until your 18th birthday, then you can leave.”
“Oh, believe me, I will!”
“And in the meantime, you can sleep over at mine any time you like!”
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“Oh and Marth, did you see Finn today at school? That Jada girl never leaves his side. It’s like she’s obsessed with him. I mean, geez…”

Sophie’s news

Also at the park, was Sophie. It had been a while (probably weeks, but it felt like 2,5 years), since Sophie had sent that email to Jérémy. The one in which she had asked him what was going on and why he hadn’t met her during her visit to Sandy Valley, while he had said he would. She still hadn’t received a reply, but while she was walking through the park on her way home from school, suddenly her phone beeped. You’ve got mail…

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Uh oh… shock-mail

“Hey Soph! Yep, sorry for the festival. I was busy with… stuff. You know, I’ve been thinking about us, and I think that… I don’t know. I need to move on. Nothing against you, Soph, but I don’t want to be stuck in a relationship, I need air. Sorry. You’re awesome, and I did enjoy every single minute we spent together, but I need new experiences. Kisses.”

Oh Soph…sophie-upset

*** Note: Anyone also reading Sandy’s stories will know that Jérémy has since become a young adult and moved on quite a bit. It’s one of the consequences of my hiatus, while life went on for my simfriends. Despite this, I felt Soph still deserved the know the answer we received from teen Jérémy after she had sent her email***

It was a busy month for the best friends in Honeycomb Valley, because Sophie now also needed hers to help her through this crisis.

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Of course, Ruby was happy to help and met Sophie at the quiet little beach.

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The girls first sat in silence…

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Then Sophie started talking…in-need-of-advice

“I just don’t understand. I thought he loved me… I thought we’d get married one day…” good-advice

“I know Soph… And maybe he did love you… But long distance is hard… Not many people can do it… And look how long you’ve lasted! I mean, wow! You’ll find someone else, Soph, I’m sure you will. Someone who doesn’t stand you up in a foreign country…”

But Sophie didn’t want anyone else…

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Ruby had another suggestion.

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“You know what you need, Soph, some pancakes! My treat!”

And so the girls went for pancakes. But pancakes can’t mend a broken heart either…

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Henry’s interview

Henry had decided the best way to present his latest plans to the public, would be through the media and so he had invited Honeycomb Gazette journalist Abigail to talk about it all.

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They first had some coffee and some chitchat.

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But soon, Abigail started her interview. Henry told her all about Stonehill and how he planned to renovate en rejuvenate the town to make it a suitable place for students and young professionals. He also told her the town would need a new name and asked her to mention a contest held for the residents of Honeycomb Valley. All residents were invited to drop their idea for a new name for Stonehill in an ideabox placed outside City Hall. The name should reflect the purpose of the town and its connection to Honeycomb Valley. In the third week of October a comity would pick the best idea. Aside from having their name be the new name of the town, the winner would also be rewarded with a goody bag full of goods from The Greenery.

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After the interview, Abigail sat down at Foster’s to write her piece.article-writing

And the next day, this was the front page of the Honeycomb Gazette.newspapers-greenify

STONEHILL ANNEXED

Mayor Newman’s initiative to “Greenify Honeycomb Valley” is already well known around town.
With projects like The Greenery and the renovation of the park in Honeybee Quarter already proving successful, the question on everyone’s mind is “what’s next”?
After all, despite most residents supporting the initiative, talk about how and where has been buzzing around town ever since The Greenery was opened and mayor Newman declared he was far from finished. Would this mean businesses would have to leave Honeycomb Valley? And if so, where would they go? And what’s more, how would that effect our economy?
Now, we’re getting our answers. Mayor Newman announced in an interview with this newspaper he has been granted permission to annex the nearby town of Stonehill and thus adding it to Honeycomb Valley.
Stonehill was once a happy, lively mountain town, but when the economy crashed about 20 odd years ago, more and more businesses were forced to close their doors and more and more people became unemployed. Poverty washed over the little mountain town and the crime rate went up. Little by little, people started to leave the town until soon it was almost completely abandoned. The only people occupying the town at the moment are those of unsavory behaviour.
Mayor Newman plans to renovate the town and bring business back to it. This means businesses now located in Honeycomb Valley might get a place in the new town.
The new town is meant to be young and youthful and will be geared towards students and young professionals. A direct underground link to Honeycomb Valley will be one of the first things to be put in place.
Stonehill will be renamed and  the renovation of the town will start over the next few weeks.
***Note:  The contest is mentioned in the column to the right***

A special visitor

On the very last day of September, John and Amy were expecting a special visitor.

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Mother Marie-Thérèse had come from Sandy Valley upon John’s request. He wanted to discuss the possibility of a place in the convent of Saint Bibine for Martha, to set her straight again. From the look on Amy’s face it seems she had her doubts.
Mother Marie-Thérèse was convinced her convent was the right place for girls like Martha who had lost their way.

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And there she was…

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Sometimes a look is enough…

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“Martha, I’d like you to meet Mother Marie-Thérèse. She’s come all the way from Sandy Valley and we feel it would be the perfect place for you to spend a few months…”

Martha couldn’t help but burst out laughing.

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“You’ve got to be kidding me! Me! In a convent! Like HELL! There’s no way dad!”

Mother Marie-Thérèse was appaled by Martha’s behaviour.

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As was John.

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“It’s things like this Martha! This is why you need to go there. You can’t say things like that! You’re going, a week from today and that’s final! Until you’re 18, you’ll do as I say and I say you’re going.

This was when Martha turned to her mother.
“Why don’t you say something mum? You can’t seriously agree with this?!”how-mum-feels

“Well Martha…” Amy sighed. “You have to understand we’re only doing this in your best interest… With the way things are going now, you’ll never find a suitable husband… Just a little while in the convent will help set you straight again….”

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“I can’t believe what I’m hearing mum! You of all people should know what it’s like to be suppressed! I’m not going! I’m not! No matter what either one of you says!”

That went well…

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Martha then ran up to her bedroom and lay on her bed thinking of how to get out of this situation. And eventually she knew there was only one solution…

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And so, that night, when everyone in the Edwards house was fast asleep, she snuck out of her bed, careful not to wake her sisters…sneak-out

… put on her coat, grabbed her backpack and tiptoed downstairs…

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… quietly crept out of the house, through the gate…out-the-door

… and in the very early hours of October, Martha disappeared out of sight…

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September 05: A Little Bit of Everything (Pt. 1)

*** It’s been two and a half years since my last update. Real life took priority over, well, pretty much everything. Those of you who know me personally or follow me on Tumblr will know that since my last post on here, I’ve been pregnant and had a baby boy (July 2015). They say little babies sleep a lot, but this wasn’t true for mine. When he was a baby, he took short naps lasting 40 minutes tops. Since it takes half an hour to start up Honeycomb Valley, playing during naps was not possible and in the evenings I couldn’t concentrate on the game anymore. My son is now a walking and talking 1,5 year old who takes only one nap a day, but since this nap lasts around 2 hours now, I get a chance to play again. Expect slow progress, but yes, things will happen again. Hooray! ***

Did you know time is a strange thing in the Sim Universe? While time went on in towns like Sandy Valley and Bimlico, it was like someone had frozen Honeycomb Valley at the end of August 05. How very weird. And yet, the Sims of Honeycomb Valley had no idea of any of this and when September finally rolled around, they went about their business as if nothing had happened. As for that September, ah well, it was a little bit of everything.

The very first day

On the morning of the first day of the new schoolyear, Benjamin was making breakfast. This year it was a very special first day, as Ethan, who turned 5 in June, was finally starting school. Finally, because he had been looking forward to it for so long now.

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And sure enough, Ethan was out of bed as soon as he had opened his eyes that morning. Yay! School!

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The whole Anderson family enjoyed the breakfast dad had prepared and then it was off to school!

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A big hug for mum Grace, as Benjamin would take Isa and Ethan to school, seeing how he had to go there himself as well anyway.

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Ethan was proud to go to school on his new bike.andersons-off-to-school

SCHOOL!! Isa looks less excited… Maybe this has to do with the fact her friend Liam has moved on to Class 2, while she has another year in Class 1 ahead…

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Another family getting ready for their very first day of school in Honeycomb Valley was the Quinn family.

While the kids had breakfast, Tiana said goodbye to her husband, who would be gone for a few days, flying abroad.

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Jada put on her new clothes in her favourite colour and hoped she’d make a good impression on her classmates in Class 6.

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Finn had offered to meet Jada in front of the school, so she wouldn’t have to go in by herself. Such a gentleman.

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But Rachel wasn’t best pleased to see Finn and Jada together when she entered the class.

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Thankfully Sadie was there so she could utter her frustration whilst Jada was chatting to Finn.

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“Why, Sadie? Why do I always have to stand by and watch Finn with another girl? When he broke up with your sister I thought I’d finally get my chance. I mean, he put his arm around me for the school pictures back in May. And then at prom he chatted to me for at least ten minutes! And now she’s here and I’m back in second place…”

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“Rach” Sadie sighed. “Finn is your FRIEND. And maybe, now we’re in Class 6, the time has come to accept the fact that that is what he is, your FRIEND. And also, from the looks of it, Jada and he are also just friends.”

It was unfortunate that only the last part of that sentence was the part that stuck with Rachel…

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The youngest member of the Quinn clan had also started her day in Class 2. And look who she’s sitting next to…
The looks these two were exchanging can only mean trouble…

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And it seemed Ruth had caught their eye…

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When it was time for recess, Ruth went up to Ellie to ask her if she wanted to play with her outside. Ruth had only had boys in her class last year and figured now that there were finally some girls, she would have more playmates.
She soon learnt this assumption had been very wrong.
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“You don’t seriously think I’m going to play with YOU, do you. I don’t play with girls in ugly skirts!”

Once she came downstairs, Ellie told Aliyah all about the crazy thing Ruth had just asked her. Aliyah thought it was quite hilarious indeed.

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But Ruth wasn’t going to give up that easily. When she saw Ellie and Aliyah playing on the swing, she again tried to join them.

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Aliyah would have none of it.

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“Are you really that dumb? We don’t want to play with a girl who wears baby pigtails! Hahaha!”

Things were better over at the high school building. Malik and Logan were fast becoming great friends, spending their recess chatting and laughing together. And look, there’s Zoe on her first day as a high school student, reunited with her best friend Emily.

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These two boys are meant to be best friends, I’m sure!

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Since they were having so much fun, Logan invited Malik to come over after school so they could hang out some more. Malik of course agreed.new-best-mates

And so it happened. After school, Logan and Malik got together to read comics…

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.. and play videogames! Geek heaven!nerd-fun

Henry’s big plan

It was known all around Honeycomb Valley that mayor Henry Newman was nowhere near finished with his project “Greenify Honeycomb Valley”. The Greenery had turned out to be a great success, both for the economy and for Henry’s reputation (and for the size of my save file) as had the renovation of the park. Further steps were now required. There had been talk of large buildings, such as the University and the hospital, being demolished and/or relocated elsewhere, but exact details were blurry and it also quite worried residents. Where would they go if they got ill? What would happen to their businesses? But Henry had a plan and in the second week of September he presented this plan to his council.

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Not far from Honeycomb Valley, only right over the hill, lays a small town known as Stonehill. Despite it once being a great place to live, it suffered from the big economic crash that occured some 20 odd years ago and is now a deserted ghosttown full of rundown buildings. It seems there are still some people living there, but they’re up to no good.

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Henry told his council he had been granted permission to annex the little ghosttown and make it part of Honeycomb Valley. The town would be renamed and cleaned up. henry-presentation-1

As Henry showed slides of the current state of the town, it became clear to everyone in the room a clean up was definitely necessary.henry-presentation-2

Deserted streets, overgrown parks and derelict buildings…

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Henry further explained his plans for the town. It would be geared towards students and young professionals. The University would be placed there as well as lots of businesses now located in Honeycomb Valley.

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After Henry was done with his presentation, the council got a chance to ask questions and give their view on things.

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David wanted to know what the precise connection with Honeycomb Valley would be. Henry explained the town would be part of Honeycomb Valley in the sense it would share facilities “and a mayor!” He laughed. There would be a fast and direct underground line between the two towns, but the new town would be known by its own name.

greenify-meeting“Will there be schools for children and teens as well?”  Katie asked

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“No,” Henry answered. “For now, The Beehive will provide education for children and teens from both towns. If we place a primary and high school in the new town as well as a University, there’s a chance more and more young families will move there, and we risk Honeycomb Valley becoming a town with only ageing population. A schoolbus service will run from the new town to The Beehive.”

Renovation work in the new town would soon start.

Students to be

Meanwhile, five students to be had no idea about the plans for the new town and the University to be build there. As far as Daniel, James, Seth, Sarah and Jill knew, next month they would start their student lives at HVU and they were very excited. Even though classes wouldn’t start until October, today they’d get a tour of the University by a current student.

But first, coffee!

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Coffee in the park on a nice sunny autumn day.

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The five friends arrived well on time and were chatting away rather excitingly while waiting for their guide to arrive. students-to-be

The guide turned out to be third year science student Narai Walker.

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James immediately started chatting to Narai.

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First stop was the library. While Narai told James about HVU’s music department, I caught Jill glancing their way… Still hung up on James, Jill, or could you have been checking someone else out…?university-library-tour

After their tour of the University, Narai took our prospective students to another very important student venue: The Bumblebee!

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And even though Narai himself has visited The Bumblebee quite a few times over the past years, it seems he also spotted something new here today…

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While Dan and Jill discovered the pub…

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… Seth and Sarah found a very interesting place to have a little flirt…

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Even more happened in September, find out in…

part 2