The Girl Next Door
Narrated by Chelsea Finnbar. Chelsea is 29 years old. Julien Cooke is 31, Todd Phillips is 39, Laney McElveen is 41, Moira Jones is 59, Daniel Ono is 44, and Naomi Redbird is 33.
Chelsea’s Previous Update/ Chelsea’s Next Update
He hasn’t moved in, but it seems like he’s usually around. Its definitely not his style to be pushy or impose himself. This year, we decided to throw a party around Valentine’s, because Julien knows it is really important to me to become part of the community here.
One of the people who has meant the most to me so far, is Moira Jones. She is new too, but since her husband took over the historic bakery on Town Square, it seems like she’s a pillar in the community. She says she’s not. She says she is just as much an outsider as the day they first looked at the old bakery and considered buying it.
“Be patient, sweetheart, there’s no quick and easy way into people’s hearts,” she told me over a bowl of soup. “And if you think you’ve found it, you’re probably not being true to yourself.”
Sometimes I just feel like, “That’s easy for you to say,” when Moira tells me to be patient. With all the work I do for the community at the Town Hall, I think that the tide is going to turn any day now.
A lot of people came to the party, some who have lived here all there lives. Like Nathan Gavigan, the nurse at the clinic.
Moira came, of course. I can always count on her.
Naomi, like me, is new to Simdale Valley, and seems like she’d be a good friend. We’ve been getting to know each other kind of slowly. I decided, if we are going to be friends, she needs to know how I feel about her flirting with Julien. It was hard, but I told her I didn’t appreciate it.
Laney lives right across the street from me, in a huge three story Victorian house. She has it all…a wealthy and attentive husband who is crazy about her, two cute kids, and a career, before she decided to stay home with her kids for a few years. She seems like she has everything she wants. I was kind of surprised she RSVP’ed for the party; I thought she would be too busy to attend.
The next morning was beautiful and bright. I live right next to the Town Hall, so walking to work is no big deal. Today the School Board was meeting, and asked me to attend.
The discussion today was about spending some of the Simdale Valley education budget to lobby with the state senate for a secondary school. James Petite wanted to save the money for the inevitable bad years that make it hard to meet the current obligations of the school board.
Laney told James he needed to get on board for this, after all, he’s a high school teacher who can’t even get a job in his field in this town.
Laney said James was just a good old boy who doesn’t care about Simdale Valley’s future.
But I felt bad for James, since he was born here, and he really does want what’s best for the town. He just doesn’t feel like spending the money on a lobbyist is the best thing right now. Laney says that more people with families won’t come to Simdale Valley until we do get a high school, and she may be right.
After the meeting, Laney came up to me. “Well, we are going ahead with the plan,” she said. “I know you are going to be able to convince the Education Committee in the Senate that Simdale Valley needs a high school. This is in the interest of both the chamber AND the school board. You can start next week by attending Senator Todd Phillips’ press conference in Port Prominence and inviting him to lunch.”
Bright and early on the big morning, I was waiting for the government building to open.
He was talking about how the education committee was announcing this year, we would be able to give raises, above and beyond step increases, to the teachers of the Peninsula State. For the first time since the stock market crashed, the budget for education was in the black.
While he was talking, I thought he caught my eye a couple of times, but maybe it was my imagination.
“I represent the Simdale Valley Chamber and School Board. Do you have a minute?”
I asked if I could buy him lunch from the cart downstairs. He gave me a look that made me blush.
I could hardly breathe. I told him the stats I had compiled that showed that Simdale Valley having a high school would economically benefit the whole Peninsula State. “Simdale Valley is the gateway to the state,” I said. “Attracting higher income families to live there would improve the level of tourism services, and having higher quality secondary education there as well will provide a more technically advanced worker base.” Right now Simdale Valley depends on home school and virtual school for secondary.
The next election is almost three years off, November 608, so the headquarters was really quiet. Senator Phillips was talking to an aide at a desk. As I was standing near the door, trying to decide whether to venture in further, he turned and saw me, and grinned.
“Chelsea, so glad you came. Let’s grab a cup of coffee.”
Over coffee he asked me to consider becoming his campaign manager, for the southern part of the state. He said he had asked around, checked my CV, and felt like we’d be a good match. My head was reeling; I didn’t know what to say. It was out of the blue. I don’t know whether his campaign is something I could back or not. It’s easy to see how he got elected to Senator with that irresistible charm. I barely know him and yet he makes me feel like we are going to do great things together.
Either way, he said he was going to advise the Education Committee to put a five year plan in place to build the high school for Simdale Valley, with matching funds from the local and state budget.
A month later, I was back in his office in Summerton, and he had good news for me. The high school plan was part of the new budget, and had the full support of the education committee. My first big lobbying job for Simdale Valley was a huge success.
Before I left, Senator Phillips stopped me at the door. “Chelsea, have you thought about becoming my campaign manager?” He asked with those captivating eyes.
My knees were weak; my heart was racing. My brain was screaming, “Take the chance!” The adrenaline was flight or fight, I chose fight. I chose take the job, and make it work for me.
Thanks so much to Starr, for the amazing Government Building, and to Dee, for the Campaign Headquarters! They are both really well built buildings with great details and I look forward to having more of this storyline take place in them!
Senator Phillips (gameplay) came home with Chelsea four times! It’s really funny because she was in the EA Career track, a lowly level 2. I am changing her over to Pru’s Political Strategist career, which has a really great progression. The second time the Senator came home with Chelsea, he got out of the ridiculous clunker car, and gave her a kiss. They were only in the 20’s in the relationship panel, but he’s a romance sim. This gave me the idea to have him pursuing her. But first, he had to have a makeover. Here’s the game’s idea of a Senator:
Naomi didn’t flirt with Julien (gameplay-wise,) but Julien did notice her; every guy always does. She has the massive attraction bonus. When Chelsea confronted her (argue) after the party, she was so nice about it, and they ended up becoming better friends.
Whoa, Daniel crossed a line with Naomi at the party, even if it was just flirting. It is appearing that Seiki is a chip off the old block. In a small town like Simdale Valley, I don’t think it will be long before Dr. Ono is on to him, so now I have to figure out that storyline.