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Take Me to the Moon 7.13

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Journal of Absinthe Morai

Caleb Vatore came to me as I labored to bring my child into the world.  He asked me to release the child’s father from my spell, and allow both of them to leave, after I deliver.  Perhaps he believes this to be a moment of weakness for me, but this is my moment.

To the contrary, feeling the sinews and joints and flesh of my undead body shift and groan and tear, only invigorates me.  I haven’t felt this alive since I first learned to hunt and feed.

Why should I give in to his mealy mouthed weakness?  I have prevailed and the child shall be mine alone.  I sneered in his insubstantial face.  Powerless, he left me.

I gave birth easily, and held up my child, triumphant.  I looked in her eyes; searching for a sign of her powers.  I see none, but surely, the power is there.  Then, as I held her, she began to cry,  helpless and pathetic, looking to me for comfort and affection.

I put her down in disgust.  How am I to abide such a weak creature?

The Count, however,  seems to have perked up with the birth of my daughter.  He spends much of his time rocking her, looking into her eyes, as if trying to divine her future.

Journal of Grayson Tesla

Tonight, I went looking for my lover after dark, because she did not come to me.  As I prepared to return into the depths of the manor, I had a new kind of bizarre encounter like I had not seen up till now, even in this madhouse.

A ghost-like being with a light emanating from his chest came to me on the second floor balcony.

“I am Caleb Vatore.  The Count battles Absinthe, even now.  Go to the third floor where you saw the bassinet.  The child is yours and you must take her away from this place of death.  There is a trellis outside the nursery parapet.  Tie the child onto your back in her swaddling, and from there, you can descend into the gorge.  Follow it.  After several hours of walking, you will find it begins to level and you can climb out.    Flee, I tell you, before you and the child are lost!”

Caleb disappeared into the house.

I longed for him to return.  As he left, confusion, fear, and doubt returned.

Journal of Count Vlad Stradilaus

I barred the door to the vault, confounding Absinthe and trapping her inside, and then appearing out of the mist.

“Let the mortal take his child,” I said.

“The child is mine,” she replied, attempting to mesmerize me.

“Child, you are drunk with the power you have exerted over this mortal.”

Seeing that I was not under her influence, she added, “You are taken with her, I see that.  If she stays, you can have her,” she bargained.

Then my protege summoned all her hate, all her power, and all her will.

“You are weak with mercy, old one,” she spat.  “I am young and virile and I will crush you now.”

“You forget who taught you all you know,” I thought. “And you know not my power, as I have never brought it fully to bear against you.”

I flew at her, incensed not by hate, but by rage and disgust at the injustice I had so long perpetrated.  Among my many sins, I had created and nurtured this monster for my own amusement.

She went limp in my grasp.

I dropped her to the floor, and she crouched there on all fours, knowing that she was defeated.

She brought herself to her knees, and looked at the floor, hoping to appeal to my pity, which she so recently disdained.

“But the child,” she said, pleading with me.  “I am the child’s mother; she needs me.  He will not be able to control her powers.”

“You lie,” I said.  “You care not for the needs of the child, but for your own.  You will now be forbidden contact with mortals, as long as I deem necessary,” I pronounced.  She knew as well as I, without being able to hunt, her only choice was to retreat to her coffin for a long, long sleep of death.

Realizing she was defeated, and losing her new prize, Absinthe begged.  “Watch over her, for she is not of their world,” she pleaded.

“It shall be done,” I promised, satisfied to see a shred of compassion still in her.  “Now depart from me.”

Journal of Grayson Tesla

After the spirit disappeared, without any  hope of being able to escape as he had described, I went to the 3rd floor room where I had seen Absinthe, when she was heavy with child.  Just as the ghost had said, I found an infant there.

As I looked into her eyes, my daughter reached to me.   I was mesmerized.  The choice I had agonized over for months suddenly seemed possible.

I strapped the child to my back with the plentiful swaddling all around the crib, and escaped onto the parapet and down the trellis.

Gameplay Notes:

  • Just as Absinthe went into labor, Caleb’s ghost came into the nursery and began to argue with her.  I thought that was spectacular timing!  He also came to talk to Grayson, which was helpful for the story.
  • Caleb has the super speed power, which to me, is the most fun to watch of all the vampiric powers.
  • Our Gen 8 heir is here, and I know everyone is anxious to learn if she is a vampire, but we have to wait a little longer, at least till she’s a toddler, to know.

21 Comments so far:

  1. cathytea says:

    Holy cow ! What an amazing genesis for the Gen 8 heir! This had been a great interlude ! I love the way you write Gothic horror – romance! It’s a great genre for you !

    • Cathytea, thanks! I never would have realized I would enjoy writing gothic horror romance (or about vampires), but with this legacy I’ve tried to explore various aspects of the game. When vampires were added I had a lot of trepidation about writing them, since I hadn’t played supernaturals much at all out of lack of interest, and hadn’t written that kind of thing before at all. It makes sense, I suppose, since Wuthering Heights is my favorite classic, and I really enjoy suspenseful ghost movies like The Others and Alfred Hitchcock’s classics. In a way, though, I think this particular plot line turned out as well as it did only because it is limited and I imitated Bram Stoker’s style. I don’t know if I could sustain this sort of story for very long. But thank you for reading, and the encouraging words; I felt happy with this part of the story and your comment made me very happy 🙂

      I am also excited about the potential threads to be taken up and carried on that this provides our Gen 8 heir!

  2. wow another great installment, I really enjoyed it, I hope Grayson and his child escape the vampires but still I feel sorry for Absinthe loosing her child like that, even if she is evil… Can’t wait to see more of our new heir 🙂

    • V, I totally agree. I rewrote this so many times, because I feel so guilty, as a writer, for taking Absinthe’s child from her. With her being the only woman in this part of the story I thought long and hard about making her to be “the bad guy,” because in real life, working in child protection, I noticed that happens a lot, when the man or men in the situation are just as bad or worse but the woman is made into the scapegoat. However, as a foil to Grayson, I wanted the Count to be a dynamic character who would change through the story and be awakened to feeling guilt, remorse, and wanting to do something about the evil he had participated in all his years as a vampire. As the last line in his journal in this part hinted, there is still hope for Absinthe too, if someone takes mercy on her. The catch is, is she ready to accept that mercy and change her ways? She has the evil trait and she takes pleasure in the suffering of others. Thank you so much for commenting, V!

  3. V, I just wanted to add about Absinthe’s character– with her evil trait, and the way I’ve written her character, it is hard to imagine her being able to care for an infant. She has collapsed ego boundaries with the infant (way outside the range of normal), seeing it as an extension of herself, so she is just disgusted by what she perceives to be it’s weaknesses. But it was still hard to have Grayson take the baby away from her. Thanks again for commenting!

    • That is true, Grayson despite his faults at least has a loving family back home that can help him, it is hard to imagine Absinthe as a loving mother, especially if the child doesn’t turn out to be a vampire…

  4. I can’t begin to imagine Absinthe being capable of all the nurturing a little tiny baby needs, whether human or vampire. It was sad that the baby’s first moments of life, she had to witness her mother’s disgust for her instead of love and comfort. Then the count picked her up, so I was relieved. If Absinthe is involved at all in this child’s life, I hope it’s only when she’s older.

    Does the baby have a name yet?

    The duel between Absinthe and the Count was exciting to see. I’m glad he took her down a few notches. Maybe she’ll do some—I would say soul-searching, but I guess vampires don’t have souls, lol!—while she’s in that long long sleep.

    A good point on her behalf, though, I don’t know how Grayson will know how to raise a vampire child, if that is what she turns out to be.

    I can’t wait for the next part!

    • Yes, at this point, Absinthe is completely unfit to nurture an infant and that part about her refusing to comfort the baby (who is nameless for now in the story) was very sad. It is going to be interesting to see what kind of person (vampire or not) that the baby is going to be and how it will be for Grayson parenting her.

  5. Carla says:

    I was about to say “wow, a baby already!” and then I realised not everyone takes as long as I do to get through a hood, lol!

    Pretty impressed with the Count defeating Absinthe like that! I’m glad Grayson was able to take the baby with him. I’m wondering what he’ll be like as a father but he does seem to have a connection with his daughter already, and an instinct to protect her. A whole new side of him that will be very interesting to see develop.

    I’m a bit confused though. How come Absinthe is blonde in the earlier pictures and then dark-haired again towards the end? Is that a feature of the TS4 vampires?

    • Carla, lol, especially in a legacy, hopefully it doesn’t take quite as long for a baby to be born although sometimes this legacy moves pretty slowly. Technically, though, it was only five game days that Grayson was at the manor with the vampires, although in story-time it was supposed to be a little less than a year. Three days for the pregnancy.

      Sims 4 vampires have a dark form and a regular form, but really, I made Absinthe have a lot of different looks because of my own vampire lore- with her being “undead,” I was imagining that her appearance is more of an illusion than a reality; in reality, she’s a corpse– but with her alluring power she is able to project herself to look however she wants. I had her looking one way when trying to appeal to Grayson, and another when she was delivering the baby and feeling powerful. When she battled the count, she had yet another appearance. I also had her change hairstyles and dress a lot because I wanted to play with all the various looks and I don’t figure I’ll play vampires very much overall.

      Yes, I’m really looking forward to seeing how Grayson’s character (and gameplay self) develop now that he has a daughter and has returned home. I know he’s going to be different but not sure how yet. I just got them settled in, and drafted this weekend’s post, so in a gameplay sense, I’m just now getting to the point of delving into what it’s like for him to parent.

      Thanks for commenting!

  6. Oh very exciting! Glad that Grayson has finally escaped and with the child too. Sad that she will grow up without her mother but Grayson seems very loving and affectionate towards her so she will be in good hands.

    • Definitely, Grayson is proving to be a very attentive and appropriate parent for Hedy, plus the household also contains the butler and Hedy’s grandparents. Absinthe can not be tamed. She would definitely change things drastically for the Tesla household were she to be involved in Hedy’s life, but I am pretty sure we will see more of her eventually because her story isn’t finished. Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

  7. Echo Weaver says:

    Woo! I love the vampire animations! I don’t think Sims 3 has any vampire fighting. Was Caleb’s glowing chest related to his super speed power?

    If the Count promised to look after the baby, perhaps we’ll see him again.

    • When I saw the trailer before the game pack came out, I figured the fight animations were probably not something I’d use or be really cool, but they really are pretty amazing. There’s a sparring type of interaction between friends or a mentor/mentee, but there’s also a true duel between enemies.

      I think all vampires that die by exposure to sun have the glowing chest. (He wasn’t technically killed by Absinthe in the game; he died outside the door due to a glitch).

      The Count has already come by to check on Hedy once in San Myshuno, but Grayson wasn’t home and when he returned, he was gone. I’m looking forward to his next visit or their next meeting. Grayson just has to be careful not to invite him in daytime in case the glitch happens again.

  8. maisie says:

    Wow the Count took her down! He is one creepy vamp! Loved their fighting scenes, and that Caleb was getting involved with everything! He’s turned quite into a pest for Absinthe. Hopefully the baby will do well with Grayson, it’s crazy to think of him as a parent, but he did seem tender toward her when he came upon her. Can’t wait to see how she looks as she grows!

    • So glad you enjoyed the sparring between the Count and Absinthe. He started out so lackluster, I don’t think she or the readers expected him to revive and become an antagonist to her plans. True, we don’t have much time to adapt to the idea of Grayson becoming a parent, and it’s hard to imagine him being ready for that, which is sort of the nature of legacies as they relentlessly progress. I don’t think of him as ready for parenthood, but kind of caught up in the fear of the situation and operating out of a fight/flight mode. I appreciate hearing your thoughts on how Grayson’s character has developed in your mind as you read.

    • Oh- also, as for Grayson instantly being moved to act on the part of his daughter- I consider her to already have some of her mother’s vampiric allure, and exert that over Grayson at least to some extent.

  9. Wow, that was a great chapter!! I loved how Absinthe called the baby pathetic, haha, I can’t believe a mother would call her child that!
    The fighting scenes were awesome as well as the way Grayson “acquired” the heir eventually! Very nice 🙂

  10. I’m so glad you liked the fight and the escape, Sempreviva! Absinthe’s humanity is either suppressed or dead, whichever way you want to look at it– I can’t imagine a mother calling their baby pathetic either. But Maisie (who commented above you) was correct- even as an infant Hedy is able to wield a bit of the alluring power she inherited from her mother. Thanks for reading- you’re almost caught up to the current post, too.

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