Warnings: language, mental illness, addiction, partial sim nudity, sexual situations, sexual fantasies, sexual memories, sexual thoughts in general, sex-related heat stroke, and one bad potato chip analogy.
So Johnny left.
So Johnny left, and I'm still here.
So Johnny left, and we just go on existing without him.
That's the craziest part of the whole thing. That we can continue to exist without Johnny. Well, in a way we do. In another a sense, a very real sense, he's still here. He's here, in our heads. In the spaces in between us. In Ophelia's belly. Well, a part of him is. To say that we've lost him completely just wouldn't be true. Maybe he could never fully leave, just like he said.
It still hurts. Not as much as it did, but it still does. I guess it always will, just a little.
The therapy crap isn't so bad. Or at least it isn't as bad as I thought it would be. After we found the right one, that is. That first guy...
Well, he was interesting, anyway.
But yeah, once we sorted that out, it wasn't so bad at all. And hey, get this. Apparently I have a bit of a "fear of abandonment". Wow, really? You don't say. I'm so glad we're paying her all that money. Even I could have figured that much out. It's hardly the only thing wrong with me, but surprisingly, I'm mostly okay. Not nearly as fucked up as I thought I would be. I've got issues, don't get me wrong... self-sabotage was a bit of a recurring theme to name just one. There's a tonne of shit wrong with me. But like beneath all that, as a person, I'm not completely horrible. Not worthless, useless, a lazy piece of crap, or any of those things I've kept believing about myself all these years. Well, I guess the lazy part was true.
Grew up badly again, though. Literally lying in a fucking gutter this time. Not too much I can say in my defense, I guess. I don't have any parents left to blame it on or anything, so that one was all on me. Maybe I just have a problem with transitions or something.
I haven't really talked about Johnny in much detail with my therapist yet. I'm not sure I'm willing to have her unpack that and spell it all out for me right now. To let her turn him into something other than the perfect golden-haired miracle that he is inside my head. Maybe one day, but not yet.
There's nowhere I could go where I wouldn't take a part of you with me...
It was like I hit "record" in my brain when he started saying all that. I sort of burned it all in there. Sometimes he'd just vomit out these perfect monologues. Like where did he even get that? Did he prepare it beforehand? Just... amazing. An actor to the end.
This is exactly why love is so terrifying. You just open your heart wide, leaving it exposed, waiting for the knife. And Johnny drove it in there good. He gave me pretty much exactly what I wanted and still he drove it right the fuck in there. Sure, he slipped his tongue into my mouth too, but that didn't stop the knife. God, that kiss. I can't even describe it. Like an atomic bomb.
Sometimes I can still taste him on my tongue. Feel the weight of him. God, the smell of him. Like nothing else in the universe...
Fuck you, Johnny. If that's not sexual, I don't know what is. Call it as epic and pure and above it all as you like, my friend, but say the word and I would take you every which way you could possibly give. On me, over me, under me, around me, through me. Up, down, in, out. Inside-out? Whatever. Those tangled up trees would have nothing on us. We'd be a pile of fucking sawdust.
I don't know whether to thank him for giving me a taste of that or curse him for taking it all away. Both, I guess. But he's gone now, so I have to accept that.
Still, you think he could have at least gone to bed with us and gave it a shot before going. He wouldn't even have had to worry about it getting weird afterwards, what with him leaving the fucking planet and all. And anyway, it wouldn't have been weird. It'd have been awesome. I've played it out in my head dozens of times now. It would have been perfect. When you think of all the things that two people can do and then add a third... god, the possibilities. Even just the number of mouths and hands alone, before you even add all the things you can put them on, and in, and around. Dammit, Johnny. How do you just walk away from that?
And he's good, too. Really fucking good. I mean, if that kiss was anything to go by...
But now he's gone, and it didn't happen. I have to accept it and move on.
And so three became two.
Yeah, it's just me and Phi now. We're doing okay so far, I think.
There have been a couple of fights where you could tell it was all because Johnny wasn't there to do that thing that Johnny would usually do in that situation. We had to work it out all on our own.
And yeah, sometimes I made a total ass of myself, but things were still okay. It didn't all crumble to pieces because I did or said the wrong thing.
And sometimes it was even her fault. Imagine that.
And hey, it's hardly either of our faults that Johnny basically washed every dish in our apartment for three years, right? At least one of us was aware of their surroundings enough and made enough effort to keep us all from living in a literal garbage dump. You should see the state of our bathroom right now...
But yeah, just me and "the missus" now. Who'd have thought? Just like normal people do it.
My girlfriend, Ophelia Nigmos. It still seems so weird to think of her that way. I haven't even said it out loud yet.
After the smoke cleared on all that, it turns out she was just a woman underneath "the myth I'd made of her." A great little woman, with a seriously rockin' body, but still just a woman in the end. Not that she's any less for it. I happen to think women are pretty amazing in general. And so maybe she's not perfect or miraculous or super special and she's not actually going to solve all my problems, but I still think she's the best thing since... well, everything. And I know it sounds sort of cheesy, but she really is my best friend. She was always that. And she's like twenty different kinds of beautiful. And I love her.
And love her and love her and love her and love her. Until I'm drenched in sweat and I ache all over. Because sometimes that's the only way to really show how much love there is. Words don't really cut it. That's just how it is.
And because sex is good. I'm a big fan.
Sometimes when I make love to her, I do it with Johnny's body. Just in my own head, you know. Like he would've done it. How I think he'd have done it. His sincerity, his intensity, his confidence. All of that. Everything I know about him, I put into it. She likes that.
Sometimes we fuck and pretend he's still here. Go ahead and judge me all you want. I don't even care.
I probably shouldn't tell you this, but she's been super horny since she got knocked up. It's pretty intense. It seems that's a thing that happens sometimes. Some women lose all interest and others want to do it all the time. She's definitely that kind. Like level ten that kind. So if you get lucky in the pregnancy lottery, you will be getting lucky A WHOLE LOT for the next nine months. She's all over me like flies on honey.
Like flies on shit, more like. Hey! Shut up, Johnny! You're not even here, okay? You know I can't keep imagining what you would say every five minutes, so get out of my head already.
Now, where was I? Oh yeah, the horny.
No, but seriously. She's so, so horny right now. Just unbelievably horny. It's like she's a Romance sim, except hornier. One time I actually even had to tell her I couldn't because I had a headache. From having too much sex.
And her body is amazing right now. You know how some bags of chips have this sticker that says, "Now 30% MORE!" Yeah, well it's like her body is 30% more now. She's not even showing yet, but all the good stuff is just... better. Why didn't anybody tell me about this before? I'd have skipped bars and nightclubs and headed straight to some prenatal classes instead. Though I guess most of those women are probably not single... but some of them have to be, right?
Fuck, I can't believe I just compared Ophelia to a bag of chips. She'd kill me. But well, you get the basic idea, right?
Wait... what happens to men when they get pregnant? Does anything else get bigger? I may need to look that up.
So she's having a baby. A tiny living being. Holy crap! Can you even believe it?
I've been trying to cut back on swearing, since there'll eventually be a set of little ears around to pick up words. Best to start now, right? As you can see, I'm still working on it. It's hard to think of actual words for things.
You know it never occurred to me that the General might have been doing that for Mom's sake. I always figured he was just the sort of asshole that liked keeping his kids perfectly in line, while he obviously went off swearing like, well, a fucking sailor when we weren't around. Solider, sailor. Army, navy. Close enough. Same shit, different pile, right?
Buck asked me if I'd--how did he put that again? If I'd "lost my fucking mind and decided to start a family." Such a smartass, throwing my own words back at me like that. And why yes, dear brother, I did in fact do that. In that order. More or less.
I felt bad telling him, after everything that happened with him. I don't know... I guess I thought it would upset him to hear it. Buck's a good kid, and I don't like to see him sad, but I had to tell him eventually. He'll be an uncle, sort of. No, he will be. An uncle. Because I'm the father. I am. It doesn't matter if the baby's mine or not, I'm still going to be the Dad. I don't know why I need to keep reminding myself. I need to be more sure of myself.
Buck was happy, of course. He wanted to know if he could paint something for the nursery wall for us. Pretty cool, right?
I really hope it's a girl.
How am I supposed to raise a son? With my awesome model of how father-son relationships are supposed to look? Is it even possible... can you even be a good father if your own father never...
I want to be. I want to be good. Please god let me be good.
I can only imagine what Tank must be thinking. We told him it was mine. I'm sure he thinks I'm a royal fuck up and just unbelievably irresponsible and all that. Well, he even said as much. Something about "if you shoot off enough rounds, some will eventually hit the target" or some similar military-related bullshit. And I just had to suck it up and pretend he was right, which completely kills me by the way, but I will gladly take that bullet. For Phi. I've got to do my part to sell our fiction. It's simpler that way. Maybe safer too.
Then on the other hand, I'm sure Tank must think it's just wonderful that I'm doing something so "normal" now. If only he knew the truth of it all. Not really as cookie-cutter as he thinks, is it?
And it fucking pisses me off, anyway. His satisfaction at me maybe acting the way he'd like me to act. Not stepping outside of that tiny little box he wants to see me in. But what am I going to do? Punch him? Nah, that's more his style. He's lucky I'm more of a lover than a fighter.
I could tell he was really happy to hear that Johnny had gone. He tried not to show it, but I could tell. Very nice, Tank. I mean, I know you hate him and all, but still.
He's always on my back about work these days and being responsible and all that crap. As if I don't ever work! I've basically had some kind of job every day of my life since I transitioned to teen, which is more than he can say, by the way. Just because Tank doesn't consider them real jobs doesn't make it any less so. The General wasn't exactly interested in giving me handouts, especially once I went to LFT. Fair enough, I suppose. I'd have literally pissed it all away.
I'm not up to too much these days, though, so I guess Tank does have a point. The band's a little stalled out for the moment, but we're still working at the flower shop.
Actually, we've been working there more often now that we're out of school, so we are working pretty hard. Tank can shut the hell up.
Florence has been showing us how to do some of the other stuff around the shop.
Restocking and working the cash and all that. I like working there. Florence is nice and easygoing, but she really knows her shit.
She's opening a new store, for gardening and landscaping stuff, and we're helping her get that all set up. It's cool that we're learning how to do that, since Phi wants to open up her own place eventually. Florence even said she'd help us work that out, which is really cool of her. She's sort of taken us under her wing.
So yeah, Tank. I am working hard, thankyouverymuch. Pretty much all of the time.
Yup, workin' real hard.
What else... let me see. There's the wedding. Jaxy and Zoe are getting married. Really, actually married. They've starting to work out the details for the wedding and everything. I guess I can't really say too much now about how insane I think that is, because here I am all signed up to raise a baby. That's at least as scary as marriage, right? Well, maybe not quite, but pretty close.
And I'm happy for them, don't get me wrong. They're happy, so I'm happy. I hope it all works out. And if anyone can pull it off, it'd be them. They're pretty rock solid. They've been through some real, actual shit together. I don't know... who exactly am I to say? I feel like a total asshole even attempting to have a sensible opinion about marriage.
Jaxy's been clean since she got out of the hopital after her overdose. She's doing the twelve steps and everything. She even apologized for "enabling" me all through uni, as if I'd have been a perfect angel otherwise. Yeah, right. But sure, Jax, if you say so. I guess her influence didn't exactly do me any good, but I think she could probably say the exact same thing about me. Zoe too.
They've moved into an older house in Sim City. Zoe's parents bought the place as a fixer-upper, and they're going to live there, pay them some token rent and help out with the renovations and shit. Jax said she was a little uncomfortable with their generosity at first, because it's such a foreign concept to her, but Zoe's parents are good for it and they really wanted to help out. It's pretty amazing that they're doing that. They're like these cool free-spirited university professors. Can you imagine having parents like that? Probably the closest thing there is to a true opposite of the General.
They've got this old shed in the backyard that makes a perfect rehearsal space. They've got plans to do it up nice and soundproof it and everything. Pretty cool, right?
Now all we need is a drummer. No luck so far, but how hard can it really be to find someone in Sim City who can play the drums? I'm sure Jax and Zo will figure something out soon.
And hey, anything is better than Gunnar, right? He was a good drummer, but a pretty sketchy guy all around. You should have heard some of the shit he used to get on with. The girls don't even know the half of it. When it was just the two of us, he'd try to exchange "conquest" stories with me, thinking I could relate. You know, guy to guy. I did not relate to Gunnar. Not at all. I mean, I'd tell you some of it, but I don't even feel good repeating it. He was nasty. You'll just have to take my word for it.
You know, he was actually the guitar player in the band originally, and Jax was on the drums, but he was a pretty shitty guitarist. Jax can play pretty much anything, so they switched it up. And she's much more of a frontwoman anyway. She's got the stage presence and the voice. It's not a classic singing voice by any means, but it's hard to beat for a rock band. Very distinctive and raw. But yeah, she can play drums too, so really she could be the drummer again, but that'd be a waste. We need to find someone else, and hopefully soon.
Hey, maybe Nervous could be our new drummer. I had him tapping out a half decent beat for me the other day. He could be pretty good at it with a bit of practice. If you don't mind a little off-beat every now and then, what with the random twitching and all.
Nervous Subject is a weird dude. Sort of scary sometimes, but not a bad guy for someone I have almost nothing in common with. Well, he leaves the house in an even worse state than I do, and has possibly even less survival skills. But that's the end of the similarities.
I've been trying to include him in some activities, get him into some of the shows I watch. Things like that. He has a lot of trouble sitting still, but it's going okay so far. Holy crap that guy is fidgety! And it's sort of weird... you know how you talk about actors on a show and how you find them hot or whatever? He never does that. I mean, if I mention it to him, it's like he doesn't even get what I'm going on about. And I tried a bunch of different times, with all sort of sims. Girls. Guys. Girlish guys. Guyish girls. At least one that was squarely in the middle... Nothing. And let me tell you, they were all very nice. I mean, it's T.V., right? I wouldn't have tossed any of them out of bed.
But everyone's into something, right? Even that Grilled Cheese sim I hooked up with that one time. Well, now that I think about it, maybe she just wanted me to listen to her talk about grilled cheese nonstop for a couple of hours. I mean, she was into it and all, but I think maybe I was just there as a sort of serving platter. As an accessory to the cheese. Hey, whatever gets you off. Who am I to judge, right? Cheese is pretty delicious.
Everyone's into something, but apparently not Nervous Subject. I guess some people just aren't. I suppose that makes as much sense as anything else. Why not, right?
So that sort of limits our potential topics for conservation. But he watches the shows. And he listens to music when I play it, too. But like, he hardly ever comments. On any of it. Not too big on the chitchat. He just sits there as quiet as a mouse. It's kind of unnerving.
He's always scurrying around the house, but making hardly any noise at all. You never know when he might pop out of nowhere. One minute you're alone, and the next you turn around and BAM! Nervous Subject. It's not so bad in the daytime, but at night?
Scares the living shit out of me every time. I half expect it to be a ghost, even though I know they stay away from the house these days. Actually, I'm pretty sure the ghosts made more noise than that.
And like I was saying about talking to him, sometimes I'll say something and look directly at him. Waiting for a response, you know. And he just... blinks a couple of times. That's it. That's the response. I'm left there trying to figure out the hidden language of blinking or some shit. And he's not a big fan of my sense of humour, or at least he doesn't laugh at my jokes very often. In fact, I never really noticed how much I joke around until I started talking to him.
I miss Johnny. Now there's a guy that can talk. I miss all our easy conversations, all the playing back and forth, poking fun, looking for a reaction, trying to get the upper hand. I miss that so much. But Nervous is here and Johnny is not. I've got to accept that and work with what I have.
Like I said, not a bad guy. We're still working out the angles is all.
But I still have no idea how he's even possibly related to Phi. I mean, it's okay for me to say that, right? Just look at the guy! He's so pale he almost glows in the dark. Oh, and I forgot to mention... apparently he has some sort of weird psychic powers, too. I don't really know the details, but Phi said he was able to predict something that he had no way of knowing. Yeah, he's an odd one for sure.
Phi really likes having him around. Even if they didn't grow up together, they're still family, and it's nice to have that. Poor Phi. My relationship with Tank may not always be the healthiest, but we're still there for each other when it counts. And I've always had Buck. Sometimes you forget how lucky you are. Ophelia's had to rebuild a family for herself from the ground up. A Family sim without a family.
We were her family. Johnny and me. We still are, even though he's gone. Family doesn't always have to be this one set thing. It can be a little different, a little odd. You can work with what you have. I think so, anyway, and Phi does too. People always think of Family sims as wanting this perfect, traditional life, but that's not always how it is. And sometimes you do have that, white picket fence and all, but your husband is literally an alien from outer space. It takes all kinds.
We're going to tell Johnny's Mom about it. Tell her everything. It's her grandchild, after all. She deserves to know and I think she'll like that. Good ol' Jenny. I really do think of her as being like a Mom to us, in a sense. Ophelia says we're also going to need all the help we can get. I'm going to take her word for that, because I sure as hell don't have a clue about babies.
I think she'll be a really good mother. I mean, she puts up with me, right? That takes a lot of patience.
But then again, maybe I'm not the best one to ask about mothers. I may not be the best judge of that.
Hey, maybe Mother's Day won't be quite as painful after this.
Johnny'd be so perfect for this pregnancy stuff. He'd cook her good food and remind her to take her vitamins. He'd take good care of her. Not that I don't. I take care of her. Of course I do! I even put that sticky note on the computer screen to remind her not to read any of those articles about what to avoid while you're pregnant. All those fucking things do is make her worry too much. Like she needs any help with that. She still reads them sometimes when I'm not looking, but I'm sure the note does help a little. And if we had a cat, I would scoop the hell out of that litter box for her. I would be the Captain Hero of litter boxes. But we don't have a cat, so...
Yeah, see. I do take care of her. I try my best, and well, we take care of each other.
I still worry about her. I know she's getting help now, and that's good, but I'll always watch her to make sure she's okay. Always. If anything is up, I will notice. I'll make sure things don't get too bad. I'm so ashamed of myself for not being there that last time. When she went for her swim. I should have known. I should have...
I guess it's pointless to dwell on that now. But it won't happen again. Not on my watch.
And there won't be any more of that from me either. Running away scared, losing my shit. Falling back on shitty old habits. God, what am I... a fucking child? Tank was right. The General was right. But they're not going to be right anymore. I'm better than that. I am. I have to be.
Phi's doing a lot better now, mood-wise. They think the pregnancy hormones may have had a lot to do with it, with her adjusting to them. And the big changes, of course. Upsetting changes. Who can blame her, really? That would mess anyone up. It messed me up too, just not in the same way.
She seems perfectly fine now. A little tired, but in a normal pregnant way, not a "giving up the will to live" super depressed sort of way. Yeah, you know, she's fine. Better than usual, even. Happy and horny as can be. Just the way I want things to stay.
Well, maybe just a little less horny.
Shit, did I just say that?
We're doing okay, I think.
Don't get me wrong. We'd much rather have Johnny here. I'd give almost anything to have him back here right now. If he walked in through the door right now, I would drop everything and... and it's not going to happen. I've got to accept that. But we're doing okay on our own. We really are.
And you know what? Most of the time, I'm happy too. Really, actually happy. When did that happen?
"Phi? Phi, Are you awake?"
"Sort of. What's wrong?"
"The ghosts... they don't ever get into the house anymore, right?"
"They shouldn't. Why, did you see something?"
"No... I guess I just had a bad dream."
"Oh, nothing. Just a dream. You know..."
- Current Music:Ripp it Up by Orange Juice