Sunday, 17 May 2015

Tales of the Uncompleted - #1: The Mortan-Murdacs

Hello! Welcome to my new series, "Tales of the Uncompleted"!

Occasionally, I'll create a new Sim family or legacy, and then, unfortunately, and for various reasons, never really do anything with them. However, in most cases, a few screenshots and pictures from gameplay are still somewhere on my computer.

Therefore, this series will highlight a few of my creations whose stories were abandoned, broken off, or simply forgotten on the way - allowing them to finally have their moment in the spotlight.

This first installment presents a "Sims 3" creation: the Mortan-Murdacs...

Audric Mortan-Murdac was a sorcerer in the Medieval era, whose unnatural abilities included being able to summon items, to travel through time, and to resurrect the dead. . With his flame-red hair, ghostly-pale skin, fang-like teeth and claw-like fingernails, several people believed that he was the son of a demon. When it was discovered that Audric meddled in the "dark arts", he rapidly fell out of favour with the townspeople, and was exiled. Forced out of his home, Audric took shelter in a small shack deep in the forest.

At the age of 35, Audric travelled back to Ancient Egypt - arriving shortly after the death and mummification of one "Princess Meryetamun", who had died in her thirtieth year. After hearing mourners discuss the Princess' great beauty and loving heart, as well as her strong devotion to the gods Anubis and Osiris, Audric decided to break into Meryetamun's tomb, resurrect her, and bring her back with him to his woodland abode - to act as a companion and friend to him following his lonely exile from society. 

He was successful in this plan, and Meryetamun indeed prove to be a wonderful companion for Audric. In fact, as the weeks and months went by, the sorcerer and the princess fell in love, and married one another in a private ritual. 

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Michael Lee Harker, Intergalactic Sim of Mystery - Chapter Twelve: Something to Remember Her By

It was 4am, and Yuri couldn't sleep. 

In fact, he hadn't slept for several nights. Instead, he'd sat up for hours at his kitchen table, stuffing himself with bizarre concoctions of comfort food. Tonight's dish was the warped combination of mashed potato, jellybeans, and butterscotch sauce.

It had been weeks since he'd last seen Crystal. She had disappeared from his life the morning that he woke up in bed alone. Yuri had called her, e-mailed her, gone to The Comet Club night after night looking for her... but it was no use. It was as if she'd vanished off the face of the Earth.

Yuri was heartbroken. Whilst he had never been a model employee, he was now completely unable to focus on anything at work. He didn't go out with his friends anymore, or tell jokes, or even smile. He had transformed into a completely different man.

There was just one person Yuri wanted to talk to... but he couldn't. He had hurt him too much. After everything he'd said to him, everything he'd done... Yuri couldn't bear to face him again. He was too ashamed of his actions. And yet, this was the one person who might be clever enough to help him - to track down Crystal.

Yuri really needed his big brother.

No. No - it was out of the question. Michael would never forgive him. He would simply say that he'd had this coming... that he'd brought it on himself. At work, Yuri sat staring at the closed door of Michael's office, desperately trying to find the courage to go inside... but he never could. As far as Yuri could see, he had made his bed, and now he had to lie in it.

And so, here he was - alone in the kitchen of a house that seemed so much bigger now that he was the only occupant. His unusual midnight feast complete, he scuttled to the fridge, poured himself a glass of milk, and chugged it greedily. It was his third glass of the night. It was funny - as a child, he'd never liked milk, but lately, he'd developed something of a taste for it.

Suddenly, Yuri gasped as a crippling pain shot through his stomach. The glass tumbled from his now-open hand, smashing into shards on the cold tiled floor.

As Yuri gasped for breath, the pain slowly subsided, and after a minute or two, he was once again able to stand at his full height. 

"All this stress must be getting to me," Yuri thought. "Perhaps I'm getting an ulcer, or something."

After he'd quickly swept up the glass shards with a dustpan and brush, Yuri returned to his bedroom, lay down on his bed, and tried to sleep. He was already miserable, ashamed and alone... he didn't want to add "ill" to that list.

It was no use. He simply couldn't rest. Instead, he pulled the sheets up over his head, and cried.

Sunday, 10 May 2015

Michael Lee Harker, Intergalactic Sim of Mystery - Chapter Eleven: Discussion, Eviction, Affection

Michael and Yuri might not have been like two peas in a pod, but at the end of the day, there were still brothers, and they cared for one another. Michael, deeply upset by his brother's anger towards him, tried to distract himself in his usual fashion: by throwing himself head-first into his work. He stayed late at the station each evening, working overtime, and spent his days off in the library, doing even more research.

A new suspect had been named: one Max Stapleton. Initial investigations hadn't produced enough evidence to convict him of any of the thefts, but the police remained determined that Stapleton was involved. One of Michael's main tasks now was to monitor Stapleton, and possibly catch him in the act.

As Michael spent yet another day in the library, his head buried in a tome detailing the city's previous gang activities, he heard a familiar voice calling to him.

"Hello, Michael! What are you doing here?"

A familiar warm feeling seized Michael's heart. He slammed the book shut, and looked up into the face of Megumi Hasekura.

"Hello, Megumi," he replied. "It is nice to see you. I am just doing some extra research for the case."

Suddenly, Michael yawned loudly, and started to shift his shoulders around. Megumi suppressed a giggle.

"It must be boring you," she said jokingly.

"Oh, no, not at all, "Michael told her. "In fact, I fear I may have overdone it as of late. I am quite tired."

"Well," Megumi said, "we could have a quick game of chess, if you fancy a little break?"

Michael smiled.

"Thank you," he answered. "That would be most enjoyable."

Michael Lee Harker, Intergalactic Sim of Mystery - Chapter Ten: A Family Dinner

Michael was making dinner when Yuri got home. However, he hadn't anticipated that his brother would be bringing his date back with him. Therefore, he was quite surprised when he saw a young lady walk in through the door, followed by a familiar blond-haired figure.

"Ah! Mike, you're home!" Yuri said cheerfully. 

"Of course," Michael replied flatly. "You know that I do not go out very often."

"Whatever," Yuri answered. "I'm glad you're home, anyway. I'd like you to meet someone. This is Crystal - my new girlfriend. She'll be dining with us tonight."

"'Girlfriend'?" Michael thought to himself. "Dear Plumbob, the man works fast."

Crystal stepped forward, reaching out to shake Michael's hand.

"Hello, Michael," she said brightly. "It's nice to meet you. Yuri's told me so much about you."

Michael shook Crystal's hand, as he was expected to do, but he had begun to feel very... uneasy. There was something... odd about her. Something that made Michael's senses go on alert, as if something bad was about to happen. In fact, it was the exact same feeling he got whenever he was questioning -

No. No - surely not! Yuri was foolish, yes, but he knew better than to associate with criminals. Perhaps he was just nervous about meeting his brother's new acquaintance... the feeling would almost certainly pass in a minute or two.

"What's cooking?" Yuri asked, bringing Michael sharply back from his thoughts.

"Oh... pasta," he replied. "Penne bolognese."

"Michael speaks Italian, you know," Yuri said to Crystal, before turning back to his brother and saying, "Sounds great. I hope you made enough for three!"

As Yuri and Crystal took their seats at the table, Michael turned his attention back to the now-bubbling pasta sauce, desperately trying to suppress the uneasy feeling that was quickly growing stronger.

Michael Lee Harker, Intergalactic Sim of Mystery - Chapter Nine: Lovers and Neighbours

The next day, at noon precisely, Yuri was stood outside the art gallery, anxiously checking his watch. He clutched a single red rose in one hand. Crystal was nowhere to be seen.

"She must just be running late," Yuri told himself. "She can't have stood me up. I mean, she couldn't. She wouldn't. Would she?"

He needn't have worried. A few minutes after twelve, Crystal came sprinting down the street, desperately trying to catch her breath by the time she reached Yuri at the gallery entrance.

"Sorry... bus late... ran here.. sorry..." she explained between gasps.

Yuri waved his hand dismissively, but politely.

"It's OK," he replied reassuringly. "I'm just glad that you're here."

He reached out his hand, offering Crystal the rose. Smiling, she took it from him carefully, touched by the gesture, and grateful for the gift.

"Thank you," she said, now full recovered. "I just adore red roses!"

Yuri offered her the crook of his arm in a mock-gentlemanly fashion. Laughing, Crystal slipped her arm through Yuri's, and allowed him to lead her into the gallery.

Michael Lee Harker, Intergalactic Sim of Mystery: Chapter Eight - Crystal & The Crime Wave


Detective Michael Lee Harker paced up and down the Investigations Room, examining the case board closely. 

Over the last few weeks, a string of thefts had taken place all over the city. The whole affair was rather mysterious: no signs of forced entry at any of the crime scenes, no-one injured or physically harmed in any way... but still, items had been going missing left, right and centre. Clearly, the police were dealing with a criminal mastermind - but fortunately, they had a mastermind of their own working on the case.

Michael had already taken in a few suspects - people spotted near the crime scenes around the time of the thefts. He'd tried every questioning method he could think of: the good cop, the bad cop, trying to win them over, threatening them with jail... but the only reply the suspects ever gave to his questions was, "We did what the Commander told us to."

Who this "Commander" was, he was still none the wiser, but something about every suspect he had questioned... unnerved him. Some strange instinct inside him told him there was something not quite right about these people. In time, he'd decided that these feelings must have been brought on the the fact that they were criminals. He was, after all, a man of the law.

As Michael looked over the events timeline and various photos of the robberies, he was interrupted by one of the officers calling to him from the back of the room.

"Hey, bro!" Yuri said. "I'm heading out to the clubs tonight - gonna have a bit of fun. You wanna come with me?"

"No, thank you," Michael replied. "I am busy dealing with this case."

"Oh, come on! One night off won't kill you!"

"I said no."

Yuri sighed.

"Fine. Be a boring old fart. See if I care."

With that, he turned on his heels and walked away.