Writer Notes: I know you all have been waiting very patiently since the death of Vivian and the birth of Clarice, but IT’S HERE!!! Chapter 9!
Warnings: secret agent man! puns may be intended, half-nakedness, blurred nakedness, sexual references, arguing, (mis)quoting a famous line, aspiration failure, and speed dating.
You would never notice him unless he allowed you to. That was John Mole’s specialty. He started out gathering intelligence through a telescope until the right person recognized his potential. Now he was freelance and was often hired by the high rollers. As of late, his main employer was Malcolm Landgraab.
John didn’t always agree with Malcolm, especially when it came to “business.” Malcolm was widely known as the “Repo Man,” but few knew he was head of crime too.
Those that did know, were powerful enemies.
So John would always have a job protecting Malcolm.
The job came with specification. You didn’t always have to be the biggest, baddest dude on the street, but you did have to be intimidating.
Which meant you had to be willing to do nasty things.
John didn’t like this part of the job.
But he was compelling enough for cooperation. Only a few times did things not go as planned. And when that happened, Malcolm reached out to his “allies.”
The Beakers were usually his first choice. They were not only brilliant, but psychotic. They believed through torture you would get all your answers.
Though John was widely uncomfortable under Circe’s stare, she was not the most dangerous of Malcolm’s contacts.
No one quite lived up to Olive Specter.
There was something eerie about the woman. Perhaps it was her nicknames by the townspeople: Black Widow, Death’s Mistress. She had a reputation.
And she did not deny it.
Though John had grown in Malcolm’s confidence, there were things he didn’t want to witness. Things that not even he wanted to know.
For instance, Malcolm’s obsession with Bella Goth. What was a wild fantasy, now was living in his house. Donna Cove was not exactly Bella, but she was adequate.
But, perhaps Malcolm was not adequate enough for her.
“Did you make the set up?” Donna asked.
“Yes, yes.” John waved his hands trying to quieten Donna. “It’s all ready for you at your departure.”
“Thank you.” Donna said and she meant it. “And you were sure to change my schedule on Malcolm’s board?”
“Like you asked.”
“But, I have to ask.” John said. “Who are you meeting?”
Donna mischievously smiled. “Just an old friend.”
He knew he should not have broken Malcolm’s trust. He knew the consequences, but he didn’t care.
But why was he up all night if he wasn’t worried about something? Or perhaps someone?
“Hey John!” Natasha Una slid open the door and stepped inside.
“What do you want? I’m about to leave for work?”
Natasha raised an eyebrow at the telescope. “You’re not going back to bad habits. Now are you?”
“No, I was just star gazing.”
“Sure you were.”
“By-the-way, I thought you said you were redecorating.” Natasha glanced around. “It still looks dull to me.”
“You don’t have to be so black and white. Why not spruce it up with some color? ”
“Natasha…” John sighed and counted back slowly from ten. “What do you want?”
“Seeing if you’ll play hookie with me?” she smiled. “I mean, when do you EVER get a day off? Nobody’s going to die without you.”
“You seem to misunderstand my job.” John answered.
“You won’t let me know any of the details.” Natasha returned. “Come on, what could it hurt to have some fun?”
“Just a minute.” John said as the phone began to ring.
“Yes, sir. I understand.”
“So? What did he say?”
“What did you do?” John asked. “How…”
“I may have did a something and pulled you some strings.”
“Now you get to have fun!”
“And how does one start fun?” he had to ask.
“With grilled cheese!”
John fetched the cheese, bread, and butter and heated up the pan while Natasha ranted about her day.
“Can you believe it? Luis wants me to go speed dating!”
“Speed dating is for losers who can’t find anyone on their own. Don’t listen to him.”
“Oh yeah! Next, we hit the streets!”
“Does this involve me carrying a bunch of bags?”
“How can all my cards by declined?!”
Sharon Wirth wasn’t worth anything. The repoman took everything: the house, the car, and her dignity, but Sharon was trying her best to get back on top. Though being a jazzercise instructor wasn’t glamorous, it was something she was good at and enjoyed. Her sister Hannah didn’t understand, but she had Isaac to help out with bills.
Still Sharon was frustrated. She wanted to move on with her life and out of her sister’s house.
And she already had an eye on someone too.
“Hey John!” she smiled. “How lucky am I for meeting you here?”
“Who’s this?” Natasha asked, but they ignored her.
“Can I ask you a favor?” Sharon inquired. “Hannah wants her rent, can I borrow…”
“You don’t ‘borrow’ money, Sharon. You loan it.” John returned.
“Pleeeeeese John! I only need, like, thirty more simoleons! I’ll make it up to you good, sugar! Please?”
John sighed. “Sure,” he replied. “But I want it back by next week.”
“Thanks, babe, you’re a doll!”
“Call me!” Sharon was confident she would get John Mole, but there was still one little obstacle.
“I’m not saying she’s a bad person,” Natasha said. “But she’s nasty!”
“You don’t even know her.” John replied.
“And you do?” she asked. “Tell me, John, what do you know about Miss Sharon Wirth?”
“She’s always been nice to me even when her sister caught me spying on them.”
Natasha opened her mouth then closed it. John did not have many friends growing up so his telescope was the only form of socializing he had. Even though she wouldn’t say it was social, more like the opposite.
She met John in college and he was definitely different. Natasha made it her mission to get him involved in the world.
He had made incredible progress since those days, but Natasha knew John wasn’t happy. And she knew he was doing bad things for work. And now this Sharon Wirth.
“She’s trouble and you know it.” Natasha said. “It’s a couple of simoleons here and there then a hundred, two hundred.”
“I’m not worried about the money, Nat.”
“And it’s my business. Why do you care so much?”
“Because I’m your friend and I hate to see you make a terrible mistake.”
“A mistake? What the hell does that mean?” John snapped. “Nothing has happened! If anything, you are the one with a problem.”
“I trying to protect you!” she returned. “You are smarter than this!”
“No, what I am is your pet little monkey! To cook for you, to bring you every where, to carry all your bags!”
“You couldn’t stand the idea of someone else being interested in me and possibly losing me to her!”
“You know nothing John Mole.”
“Yeah, it’s me. Can you come over?”
It was a terrible mistake and it did not satisfy him.
John moved his telescope from the backyard to the roof.
He was back to bad habits, but he had to check on her.
Natasha Una had no trouble driving herself insane.
She had recently filed for aspiration failure and landed in weekly therapy visits. It was hard being a grilled cheese sim sometimes, especially when you were constantly running out of grilled cheeses and simoleons.
But Natasha was trying to get back to her life and her hobbies. Painting was one of her foremost passions (behind grilled cheeses). She loved her painter buddies, but most of them were teens and still immature.
They could either be entertaining or annoying.
But her cousin, Luis, had other ideas for her. After a week of harassment, Natasha finally agreed to go speed dating. Perhaps she would meet someone interesting.
“Grilled cheese? Sounds like one of Zebest Quizine’s disgusting recipes.”
“Wanna go shoot off some fireworks?”
“Painting? That’s not a skill. Back in my day, there were only seven skills: cooking. cleaning, charisma, creativity, body…”
“How do you feel about probing?”
“Let’s be honest. I’m just here to make my father shut up.”
“Well, she’s my mother. I love her so I can’t leave her all alone.”
“So you own a PLASMA screen TV? Where did you say you lived?”
“What did I say about speed dating?”
“John? How did you know I was here?” Natasha asked.
“Let’s just say I have a sixth sense.”
“You were using your telescope again!”
“No, I called your cousin to find out where you were. You haven’t returned any of my calls.”
“I’m sorry, John.”
“Not as sorry as I am.” he replied.
“You’re not like these losers, Nat. You’re special.”
“I’m not that special.” she shrugged.
“You’re a freaking grilled cheese sim, Natasha! How many of them have you ever met?”
“Besides, you’re my friend. And I…” John wiggled in his chair. “…should have never yelled at you over something so stupid.”
She nodded in agreement. “Apology accepted.”
“So we can move past this?”
“Yep, because in about two seconds you’re gonna have to move to the next table.”
Additional: In each chapter, I will try to feature a career that Pat Newbie is working on to keep with the Bustin’ Out theme. In this chapter her featured careers were Mad Scientist and Gangster. You can find information about Bustin’ Out and the main story’s careers HERE.