3. Early Days - Goths
So you might be wondering why Mercer was so bad, what happened to Cecilia and how did the Sororah sisters end up with one dad apiece.  It all started in October 2004.  I managed to get a whole lot of play in in Little Carping, before the release of University in March 2005 when, finally, I brought in some new characters so the following stories are about the early residents of Little Carping.  The Goths, Vaughans and Phoebe Sororah all moved on quite considerably during that very brief time just after the game released and the arrival of the University expansion.  It’s kind of strange writing up these stories more fully after so much time.  The original events were much more fragmented of course, and I kind of melded the sims responses into a story for each family based on my interpretation of what they did.  When I talk about Randolph’s response to Cecelia’s boredom and frustration below, for instance, he did actually have the gall to lecture her one evening.  If I had been Cecelia I would have punched him but she just apologised at the time.  Still, Cecelia’s frustration stuck at home looking after Gunther, as a knowledge sim, was very apparent at the time.

The senior Goths quickly settled into a large square house (based on their house in TS1) on the most exclusive road (Buckingham Road) in Little Carping.  They had almost no money left after the purchase of the house and grounds and much of the interior was not even furnished but they still just managed to buy it.  Randolph though thought that it was important for them to live in a property commensurate with his social standing and Cecelia’s for that matter – Randolph had married in Cecelia, a scion of the Crumplebottom family of course.

The house has an impressive entry with two story windows and a double stairway to the upper level.  To the right is a large dining room at the front and a kitchen behind.  The kitchen had some furnishing (in blue!) but the dining room was unfurnished at first.  To the left of the hallway is the lounge (or drawing room probably for the Goths), furnished in red and cream.  This was also unfurnished at first.  Behind that is Randolph’s study and then across the back of the ground floor is a music room (nothing in there at first, LOL) and the downstairs bathroom.  Just in front of that is a set of stairs which lead to the cellars.  Going upstairs, there is also a large landing space with five bedrooms to the sides.  The master bedroom is at the front of the house to the right with an en-suite bathroom.  There is another large bedroom on the left frontage.  Three smaller bedrooms are at the back of the house.  Only two rooms had beds at first – there was nothing else up there apart from bare wooden floors and one small wall light on the landing – they couldn’t even afford to decorate the walls.  Randolph and Cecelia got depressed just going to bed.
I’ve always liked having sims earn absolutely everything they have – I don’t use money cheats all that often.  In buying the plot of land and building the shell of the house, the Goths were practically broke.  They had one toilet and a fridge, counter and sink downstairs and a bed and crib upstairs.  There were several rooms where the windows had not been put in and the upstairs landing had no bannisters (so watch your step in the one light dark up there – sadly sims don’t fall off edges).  So although Randolph had a place to live that was sufficiently impressive and reflective of his status as a representative of the Goth family, they were flat broke and he had to get to work pretty quickly. 
Randolph naturally went to see his father
  • “I need a job, father”, he said, “or Cecelia and I won’t be able to manage.”
  • “You will need to learn the ropes my boy, if you’re to be any use to the firm” said his father
and so Randolph started at the very bottom in the mailroom at the family firm and started bringing home a small salary with which to keep the family afloat.  For the first few years, they were living hand to mouth buying food and paying bills and occasionally buying some décor or furniture to open up a bit more of the house to use.  Most evenings were spent studying for the skills and knowledge Randolph needed for work leaving little time for his wife and son.  After that, he also had to spend quite a bit of time socialising and pressing flesh to develop the necessary friendship network in order to advance.  And advance he did, as time passed, Randolph was a success at work, earning several promotions in rapid succession.


In the meantime, Cecelia stayed at home.  She spent most of her time reading cookery books with the aim of not incinerating her entire family at dinner time.  She did wonder why she had spent all that time at school studying hard and doing well when what she ended up with was caring for a small child all day, doing the housework and not a lot else.  Little Carping offered her little in the way of distraction and entertainment.  The only community spaces at that time were a grocery, a clothes shop and a – albeit nice – little park.  “There only so much shopping and strolling I can do,” she complained to Randolph one evening, “and you can’t have an intelligent conversation with a small child.” 


“I really think, as my wife, you need to remember what I am trying to do for our family,” Randolph responded pompously, “I need to come home to a quiet well-ordered house and to be able to get on with preparing for work.” 
Cecelia then became pregnant again and barfed all over the place – apparently Randolph didn’t need to spend absolutely all his time pursuing knowledge and skills.  The physical toll of the pregnancy, her constant hunger and tiredness, plus looking after Gunther’s needs, meant she hadn’t time to get round to everything and much of the housework got left undone.  Randolph was often doing his studying surrounded by dirty pots from breakfast which meant the socialising he had to do was done outside the house since it was not a pleasant place to invite people over.  Cecelia was miserable and found herself thinking back to when she was at school.  “I was such a good student,” she thought, “I enjoyed it so much.” 


Poor Gunther was stuck between a bored and increasingly fractious mother and a father who had no time to spend with him. 

On the other hand, Randolph’s success meant more money coming into the house in wages and a series of bonus payments.  This meant that completing the build by inserting windows and the occasional door and decorating and furnishing more spaces was possible.  They furnished the lounge (in the aforementioned red and cream) and bought a TV so Cecelia had at least something to watch and pass the time.  They bought an easel to stick in the study though that appealed more to Randolph than Cecelia.  He needed the creativity points.  They were even able to afford a new bed for Gunther when he aged up which was fortunate as Marianne arrived shortly after.  She was a brown haired, grey-eyed baby like her mother.

Then, while partially furnished (they may have had the piano by then), they invited the Headmaster of the local public school (one Vince Walter*) over and Cecelia gave him Mac n Cheese for dinner (not burnt).  Both Randolph and Cecelia schmoozed for all they were worth and Gunther showed Mr Walter the piano.  Gunther got into the local public** school – probably more on the Goth name than how impressive the Goth residence was at the time I should imagine.  The Mac n Cheese was probably good though – Cecelia is pretty clever and practical after all and she had several points in cooking by this point.

So Cecelia was bored and being lectured to by her ambitious distant husband with a small baby to look after, Randolph was out most of the time with work concerns and Gunther went off every morning in his natty school uniform.  Randolph tried not to show disappointment in Gunther’s slow academic progress.  Because he was a bit slow.  Poor Gunther.
* This is the early days of the game remember, so I still had all the regular Pleasantview townies in the game.  I got rid of them all later
** yeah, I know private school in America but I’m British so I’ll call it public school.  Actual schools for the public are called state schools here.
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