21 November 2012

So I figured that those of you who noticed my absence deserved an apology, or at least an explanation. The truth is, I don't really have much of one. There are certain things I've struggled with in my past, and new things that have only just come up, and none of it's easy at all. These past few months have been really hard, and the more I tried to deal with it in my real life, the more I pulled away from my online friends. It's really rare for me to even talk to anyone these days, and as time went on I got very discouraged by the lack of people who seemed to even notice (with the exception of PiB, who always asked how I was doing and whom I appreciated very much during all of this), which is why I unfollowed everyone I cared about and eventually deleted my Tumblr altogether.

There are certain people, or at least a person, to whom my absence really hasn't been fair. It's particularly not fair because I'm a hypocrite, or at least a really bad friend. I don't have any excuses, really, other than the fact that I was probably a bad friend before any of this. I don't think I ever got over the months I spent last winter without my best friend, and when it happened again I was definitely not equipped to go through the same thing. The truth is that I could have been a better friend and tried to understand, but I didn't. I was selfish- I am selfish. When I was diagnosed last month, all I could think about was how much I really missed the people in my life that I would have talked to about it before, and I've been so focused on myself and my problems that I stopped caring about other people's.

All things considered, I don't really expect to be around in your community any longer. I'll really miss it, and the friends I made from being part of it. But I never really felt like I fit in much in the first place, which was really my own fault for not making more of an effort to be visible. At any rate, I'm done writing for a while. I haven't been able to write anything for months; I don't know if it's my depression keeping me from doing anything, or if I genuinely don't have any muse left for the Pesces and the story I created around them. I'd like to say I'll return one day, but I probably won't. I get too sad when I think about everything related to it, and I think I just need to look around for something that makes me feel happy again. I don't know what that is yet, but hopefully I'll know it when I find it.

So, I'm sorry. I wish I could have done things differently, or at least felt differently about everything. Really, when it comes down to it, you deserve better than me.

25 March 2012

Character Bio: Phillip Evans

Age: Elder
Occupation(s): Policeman (formerly), Retired (currently)
Traits: Can't Stand Art, Angler, Loves the Outdoors, Charismatic, Family-Oriented
Sign: Cancer
Favorites: Blue, Pancakes, Country Music

Unlike his wife, Phillip Evans has not led an exciting or varied existence. Having lived in Riverview his entire life, he's not fond of change and tends to resist it in all forms. Isabel has often tried to get him to try more things, insisting that change isn't as scary as it seems, but his fear of the unknown has always held him back from chasing the same kind of opportunities that Isabel always has. He likes to tell her that she is his big adventure, a statement that warms Isabel's heart long enough for her to drop the subject. 

While he comes across as rather stern, Phillip is a compassionate and caring man underneath his gruff exterior. His guarded countenance and brevity made him a perfect candidate for the police force, and he served his community well over the past  thirty years. Now that he's retired, however, Phillip enjoys fishing and hiking, hobbies that he will never be too old to pursue. 

While he initially disliked Moe- whom he saw as a stranger who took his daughter away, despite the fact that she moved to Barnacle Bay long before she met Moe- he has recently begun to get along with his son-in-law much better than he used to. Perhaps part of Phillip will always resent the change that took Jane away from him and sent her to Barnacle Bay, but at least he realizes now that it wasn't Moe's fault. And, of course, living near his daughter again has made him more agreeable in general. Additionally, the two are both avid fisherman, a fact that will provide ample groundwork for a better friendship, should the two men choose to take advantage of the opportunity. 

Character Bio: Moe Pesce

Age: Adult
Occupation(s): Fisherman (formerly), Doctor (currently)
Traits: Workaholic, Good Sense of Humor, Handy, Angler, Loves the Outdoors
Sign: Gemini
Favorites: Orange, Spaghetti, Classical Music

The hub around which the entire family centers, Moe is a family man at heart. He spent the majority of his time in Barnacle Bay waiting to find Mrs. Right, and when he met Jane Evans, he knew he finally had. While the beginning of their relationship was quite rocky (thanks to one Chase Cruz), Moe eventually won her over with his kind nature and hilarious jokes. 

A short while after the birth of their twins, Sophie and Ethan, the Pesces picked up and moved to Twinbrook, though Moe was initially against the idea. But he has always had a hard time saying no to Jane, and up until recently, their marriage has always been a harmonious one built on equality and communication. But Moe's jealous nature, combined with Jane's nosiness and Chase's interference, led to a sizable rift in their relationship, one that is only just now being repaired. Over the past few years, Moe has had to learn to curb his jealousy and control his emotions, and he's become a better person for the experience. 

Of course, that isn't the only struggle Moe has had to deal with in recent months. While he's devoted to his family and would do anything for them, his workaholic nature has begun to show up in full force, making it hard for Moe to juggle his family and his career. He likes being good at what he does, and he likes feeling as if he's making a difference. But while his family has always been enough to curtail that selfish streak, his recent problems with Jane have made it easier for some old habits to come slipping back in. It isn't apparent to everyone else yet, but Moe has begun spending more and more time at the office, and it's difficult for him to fight his natural instincts. 

24 March 2012

Chapter One Summary

Our story centers around a family struggling to stay together despite the problems that seem to follow them everywhere. Originally from Barnacle Bay, the Pesces have relocated their family to Twinbrook in search of a new life and a fresh start. While he was once a doctor with a good salary and excellent prospects for the future, Moe has left that career behind him and intends to embark on life as a fisherman, while his wife Jane has recently been hired as a teacher at the local elementary school. Despite the initial bumps in the road- including Moe's reluctance towards the move- the Pesces settle into a comfortable routine that seems to please everyone, including their rambunctious twins, Sophie and Ethan. They quickly find out, however, that their new life is anything but simple.

Shortly after arriving in Twinbrook, the Pesces discover that part of their past hasn't exactly stayed behind in Barnacle Bay. Jane's brooding and troublesome ex, Chase Cruz, has also moved to Twinbrook to start a new life. When they confront him, he explains that he has moved to pursue a fresh start of his own, and claims that he'd had no idea that Jane and Moe had moved into the neighborhood as well. But is his explanation genuine?

Moe and Jane resolve to not let Chase get in the way of their new start, and for a while it seems like their plan will work. As the twins grow out of their toddler years, the Pesces entertain ideas of expanding their family. While Jane wants a new baby to fill the void that the twins left, Moe is looking forward to the twins growing up and giving them back some of their freedom. After all, twins are a handful to raise, and it's about time they get a break. Before they can come to a decision, however, Jane finds out that she's pregnant, and the Pesces are forced to reevaluate their plans.

Moe decides to go back to work as a doctor, and he and Jane prepare for the baby's arrival. Meanwhile, the younger Pesces have become quite close to Lucy, who- unbeknownst to them- is the daughter of their parents' dreaded enemy, Chase Cruz. When Chase comes to pick up his daughter after a playdate, all three adults are surprised to find out that their children have become friends, and the encounter doesn't go smoothly at all. We find out that Lucy is the daughter of his ex-fiance, Amy Jenkins, who was murdered and left Lucy in Chase's care.

Jane and Moe try to keep their distance from Chase, but he seems to be everywhere, particularly when it comes to Jane. After an unfortunate encounter in the laundromat involving mixed signals and pregnancy hormones running high, Jane returns home to Moe and tells him about Chase's attempted kiss- an admission that doesn't go over well. Moe's jealous nature rears its head, and he never fully trusts Chase or his intentions. Jane assures him that she has no feelings whatsoever for her ex-boyfriend- except perhaps loathing and hatred- but Moe's newfound jealousy and her own muddled-up hormones certainly make for a lot of fighting.

It isn't long before the baby is ready to join the Pesces, and Jane and Moe expect their third- and final- pregnancy to be a breeze. But when Moe forgets to call the babysitter, the twins are left alone in the house- and when Sophie and Ethan are left to their own devices, trouble is sure to ensue! Sure enough, the Pesces return home from the hospital to find that the twins have somehow managed to set their stove on fire, and Jane settles her children in for a nice, long lecture.

The twins begin to mellow a little after the arrival of their little sister- fortunately for Jane and Moe! Izzy Pesce is definitely the spoiled princess of the Pesce clan, and it isn't long before she has the entire family wrapped around her finger- including Jane's parents, Isabel and Phillip Evans, who visit their granddaughter, make Moe feel uncomfortable, and announce their intention of relocating to Twinbrook all within the same evening.

Izzy's arrival and Isabel and Phillip moving to town aren't the only changes invading the Pesces' lives, however. After the pregnancy, Jane finds it exceedingly difficult to go back to work, and winds up quitting to pursue her dream of becoming a reporter. While Moe hopes that the change in career will help his wife settle down, it proves to do the exact opposite when Jane stumbles upon an article regarding Amy Jenkins' death- a death that was never fully investigated. This discovery sets her on an investigation of her own as she begins to question everyone who knew Amy Jenkins prior to her death- including Chase.

Never one to know when she's bitten off more than she can chew, Jane's questioning lands her in hot water with an unknown party who doesn't want her digging around. But it isn't until the unknown culprit throws a rock through the front window that Jane realizes just how dangerous her snooping is. She promises Moe that she'll stop looking into the case, but it's difficult for her to stay away. Fortunately, raising Izzy takes up a lot of time, and when the twins and Lucy begin acting suspicious, there's plenty to take Jane's mind off of Amy Jenkins and her mysterious death.

But it isn't long before those distractions wear off, and with the arrival of Jebediah Kane, a private investigator who recently moved into the neighborhood with his extensive family, Jane can't help but start digging once more. She hires Jeb to follow Jenni Baker (née Jones-Brown), but his findings come up empty. She continues enlisting the help of two of Amy's former friends, Angie Morris and Matt Schtick, but the investigation is slow and frustrating.

Unfortunately for Jane, the plot thickens when someone attempts to blackmail her with pictures of her and Chase, and Moe's jealousy begins to get worse. But Jane can tell him the truth- that she was simply questioning Chase about Amy's death- their house catches fire, burning to the ground and destroying the majority of their belongings, leaving the Pesces to move into Jane's parents' house. Things between Jane and Moe only get worse, and it starts to become noticeable even to the twins, who believe that the tension between their parents derives from their fight with Lucy's father.

Having inherited their mother's nosiness in droves, the twins set up a fake picnic intended to drive their parents together and force them to make up. And to everybody's surprise, it does seem to work. Moe and Chase reach a tenuous truce, with Chase apologizing for continuing to harass Jane and Moe realizing that Chase isn't always a major douche. While at the picnic, Jane receives a call from Angie telling her to meet her so that she can give her a book she found that might shed some light on Amy's death. But by the time Jane arrives, Angie has been attacked by an unknown assailant.

While Angie recovers from her attack, Jane and Moe struggle to communicate, but he does manage to give her the book Angie had brought with her to their meeting. Jane realizes that the book is Amy's diary, and that it contains several pieces of incriminating information- namely that Amy was being blackmailed about some forgeries she had unknowingly created, and that her blackmailer was none other than Jenni Jones-Brown (now Jenni Baker). Jane heads to Jenni's house to confront her, without telling anyone where she's going or what she's up to. Jenni admits to blackmailing Amy, but has a solid alibi for the day of her death and claims that she never actually received any money from her.

Jane goes to the cemetery to visit Amy's grave and think about the information she's uncovered, but someone follows her, having received a phone call from Jenni regarding Jane's suspicions. Now that she's getting close to the truth, it seems someone has decided that her snooping simply can't be tolerated anymore. Jane is attacked from behind and kidnapped, and it turns out that her kidnapper- and Amy's murderer- is none other than Matt Schtick, Amy's former friend and a local firefighter. As he starts to explain his motives to Jane, she begins to realize that he is far more dangerous than she originally thought.

He and Amy had grown up together, but their friendship had always been rather one-sided. Amy was selfish, manipulative, and blind to the damage she inflicted on those around her, particularly Matt. He had always been in love with her, but she constantly chose men like Chase, and Matt could only stand by helplessly while she made bad decisions- including the ones that led to her being pregnant and heartbroken when Chase cheated on her and left town. She and Matt had gotten into a fight that resulted in neither of them talking to each other until they were much older.

But when he admitted his feelings to her, she seemed repulsed by the very idea. For Matt, that had been the final straw. He had been involved with Jenni's blackmailing plans, hoping that by allowing Jenni to ruin her life, he'd be able to swoop in and be her knight and shining armor. When he realized that she had never felt about him the way he felt about her, he became blinded by rage and stabbed her.

By the time Matt is done recounting his story to her, Angie has informed Moe and Chase of the information she read in Amy's diary, and the two rush over to Matt's house to save Jane. While they attempt to use stealth to steal the element of surprise, Matt is waiting for them, and a standoff ensues. When Jane startles Matt, the bullet he intends for Chase misses and hits Moe. Matt is initially shocked at his actions, but recovers quickly enough to catch Chase off guard and knock his gun out of his hands. The two fight, but Matt loses his balance and falls over the balcony, crashing on the ground below.

Moe recovers in the hospital, and Jane briefly leaves his side to attend Matt's funeral. She and Chase are the only visitors, and she reflects on the sad picture this paints of Matt's life. Coincidentally, this is also the day of the twins' birthday party and official entrance into their teen years, but Jane is delaying her attendance as much as possible. Seeing Moe in the hospital has hit her hard, and she has a hard time celebrating when he is stuck in a hospital bed. Chase tells her that he can no longer stay in Twinbrook, as the guilt over Matt's death and the grief over Amy's have been weighing heavily on him. The twins celebrate becoming teenagers with their friend Lucy, not knowing that it will be the last time they see her for a while. 

22 March 2012

Character Bio: Angela Morris

Age: Adult
Occupation(s): Stylist (formerly), Day Spa Owner (currently)
Traits: Friendly, Artistic, Excitable, Adventurous, Neurotic
Sign: Aquarius
Favorites: Turquoise, Cookies, Pop Music

While her parents moved to Simssouri decades ago from Shang Simla, Angie has lived in Twinbrook her entire life. Unlike the majority of her high school friends, she never moved away, choosing to carve out a life for herself in the small swamp-filled town instead. Despite this, Angie possesses an adventurous spirit, and is always ready for new opportunities, wherever they might pop up. 

Throughout high school, she had a good eye for fashion, and it wasn't long before her art teacher suggested that she give the fashion industry a try. Angie spent the next few years honing her style, and it wasn't long before she was hired as a stylist at the local salon. It was there that she met Jane Pesce, a meddling reporter who would later become a close friend. It was also there that she reconnected with Matt Schtick, an old acquaintance from high school who would later attack her for knowing too much about his evil plans. 

It's hard to imagine anybody who would want to harm Angie intentionally, however. Her kind nature and friendly countenance make it easy to get along with her, and she's someone who simply doesn't hold a grudge. You'd have to burn quite a few bridges with Angie before she wrote you off for good. Naive, easily impressionable, and trusting to a fault, Angie is a perceptive person nonetheless, and she will always tell you the truth if it's within her power. She's a good friend to have in your corner, though she may try to make you over without your noticing! 

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